Help please! about bipolar and getting license

  1. HI everyone!
    I was dx with bipolar disorder several years ago and I am now on disablilty, I have worked very hard in RN school and plan to graduate in May. I saw on the Illinois application for licensure that they want you to disclose mental health disorders. My doctor and my instructors are saying that I am stable enought to return to work. Do I have to disclose this, I am on disabilty and I am ready to make the transition. Can they deny me a license or is just supporting documentation that they want. I am of no harm to anyone, and I have regained my functioning ability. Could someone please answer some of my questions, thank you....I have a lpn license in Co currently but will be applying for Ill state boards. I have never had anything bad against any license I have ever had...thanks again
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  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   caliotter3
    I would think that you would not be precluded as long as you are getting medical clearance from your MD. The supporting documentation will probably be requested and it will probably take longer, but if I were you I would look for positive outcomes. In your favor is the fact that you have never had any restrictions against your current license. Good luck.
  4. by   Jolie
    Please be honest in filling out your application for licensure. I do not believe that having a diagnosis of bi-polar disease will prevent you from being licensed as long as you present evidence of stable mental health from your physician, instructors, and other references. But providing false or misleading answers on your application may well disqualify you from licensure.

    This is an issue near and dear to my heart. My father has been bi-polar most of his adult life, but denied his diagnosis and refused treatment. A few years back, he was hospitalized (finally!) and treated. A student nurse involved in his care revealed to us that she was bi-polar herself and attended nursing school so that she could help patients and families with the same problems she had faced in her life. That student was a God-send to our family, and I will never forget her. (This was in IL)

    Good luck!
    Last edit by Jolie on Feb 13, '07
  5. by   lauralassie
    Ask a lawyer. Be careful. I say this because I've actually seen nurses listed as lisence suspended due to mental illness. To me that sounds like a big confidentiality breach. Not sure how boards of nursing can get away with it.
  6. by   antidote
    Be honest! It will do more damage later when someone finds out then it would if they knew from the beginning.

    If you are undergoing treatment for it, and its not extremely terrible (like your killing someone 1 second after you hug them) then I think that you would be fine! Make sure to include letter of clearance from your doctor if you do get accepted, as they will most likely need this on file!

    Keep going! Don't let something like this stop you.
  7. by   hollyvk
    Your license application will ask about disabilities or disorders that could impact your fitness to practice nursing. You should always answer those questions truthfully. The board of nursing (BON) isn't out to "get you" but they are charged with ensuring that you can safely work as a nurse. There are plenty of nurses working with your diagnosis who take their meds and are just fine. If your physician and instructors find you to be fit, that should be sufficient for the BON. The BON can, however, request access to your medical records as a condition of your license should you ever have any problems down the road.

    Best wishes to you on doing so well,
    HollyVK, RN, BSN, JD

    Quote from smoochie644
    HI everyone!
    I was dx with bipolar disorder several years ago and I am now on disablilty, I have worked very hard in RN school and plan to graduate in May. I saw on the Illinois application for licensure that they want you to disclose mental health disorders. My doctor and my instructors are saying that I am stable enought to return to work. Do I have to disclose this, I am on disabilty and I am ready to make the transition. Can they deny me a license or is just supporting documentation that they want. I am of no harm to anyone, and I have regained my functioning ability. Could someone please answer some of my questions, thank you....I have a lpn license in Co currently but will be applying for Ill state boards. I have never had anything bad against any license I have ever had...thanks again
  8. by   Berto1
    I am currently applying to nursing school, all the pre reqs are done and the disclosure issue is very touchy, in my mind. i was dx'd 15 years ago, and at the time it was none too pleasant. A shoplifitng arrest landed me in a psychiatric hospital after a seizue from benzdiazapine with draw. I had procured them from a girl i was dating, and i knew someting was wrong. the state police recod says nothing of the drug charge 15 years ago, but the county court arrest record does. I would expect any nursing school to look beyond a state police record, and can explain the drug charge as a part of being dx'd, and i'm still anxious. i have a very supportive psychiatrist. I';m also currently working to change my job from a high pressure call center to a long term psychiatric care facility's remediation department. they teach regualr school subject to young people who have been dx'd and dont do so well in regular school settings ( outbursts of violence )
  9. by   smoochie644
    :spin: Thanks everyone for your replies. I too feel it is a breech of confidentiality as I have hurt no one and have broken no laws in my lifetime. I am stable and I have been attending classes reguraly for almost 2 years and I recieved a scholarship for nursing school based on Academic Achievement. I am graduating in May and this sits in my gut until license in hands....Thanks again, and I will post outcome soon!

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