Research and placing "RN" after name when not an RN

  1. 0
    What are the roles of nurses and research assistants when doing research? What happens when someone who is not an RN in that country has a BSN from another country places "RN" after his/her name?

    I'm asking because a relative of mine who is a research assistant at a very well known institution has been signing her name as "Jane Doe, RN" when I know full well that she hasn't passed boards here (yes, I checked my state's BNE website and checked every possible name she could have used). I got bored one day and googled her name, and her name popped up with "R.N." after it. There's little to no possibility of someone else having her name because I come from a family that gets creative with names. I also know she's lied about having her license before to other people, and when caught, she's left the position immediately (she saw someone she knew at another hospital, and told that person she was a nurse there; when word got back to my aunt who is well-known in our community, she asked my cousin when she got her license. She said she didn't know what my aunt was talking about).

    I'm wondering what happens to the research she's taken part in. Her name isn't on the list of authors, but it's listed in the credentials. I always under the impression that if anything shady happens with research, it can get thrown out or corrections have to be issued. Her role, at least to my knowledge, is as a senior research assistant. Should I ignore it? I called the Board to ask what could happen, and they said it could affect whether or not she's qualified to take NCLEX if she ever tried again.
    Last edit by rumwynnieRN on May 30, '11 : Reason: insert word
  2. 11 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    She probably should be signing her name BSN since as you say she does have a BSN - I don't know what you mean by her name is in the "credentials".
  4. 0
    At the end of whatever journal article, her name is listed as a "thank you" for contributing to research.
  5. 5
    Not saying her actions are not wrong, they are illegal.... but why are you tracking her down like some sort of detective? Either report her to the board and done with it or do nothing... all your doing by posting stuff everywhere and talking to her other family members is spreading the drama, being a gossip, stuff like that. I mean come on, you took the effort to call the bne and ask them already, they know more than we can predict. After all, we would be predicting what action they would be taking.
    caliotter3, NewTexasRN, EllieBean13, and 2 others like this.
  6. 0
    If what you say is true it is not only ehically wrong it's illegal. If caught it WIL affect her ability to take NCLEX, as in, they won't let her she'll become ineligible
  7. 4
    Are you worried about her future? In that case talk to her about it! She needs to use BSN after her name and not RN if she hasn't passed the exam.

    How do you know she hasn't passed the exam? Maybe she has and you just don't know it. Maybe the credentials were given to her by the author of the research article without your relative's knowledge?

    I also think you're way too deep into her business. Nothing you're doing will be helpful to either her or you. If you feel strongly about it all, then report it, but let it go afterwards, or otherwise.
    llr26, Mrs. SnowStormRN, GooeyRN, and 1 other like this.
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    Obviously until someone passes NCLEX-RN they are not legally entitled to use the RN credentials. However, I still need to correct nurses who tell me they got their "RN at X Nursing school". No school awards RNs. They are issued by the state nursing boards.

    In this case it sounds like the person was educated in another country and may not be aware that RN is a state issued credential in the US.
  9. 0
    WoW! You really don't like her huh? GEEZ! Research Assistants where I work actually make more than the RNs, and it is a well respected position. If she is signing her name RN and has no license why has NO ONE at this "well known" institution picked it up? I'm just thinking as a research assistant why would she need to falsely sign credentials she doesn't have? Most of the research assistants I work with have Bachelor degrees in areas like psychology or biology. Psych techs and research techs work under the RN and Research Assistants. Sometimes the Research Assistants will be credited toward the research, sometimes they are never mentioned. Have you talked to her? I'm trying to figure out your real motive, it doesn't really sound like a concern for her. Hey, what do I know? I'm curious because being a Research Assistant is a fantastic career and a degree in nursing isn't required. I hope you bring this to her attention before you report her to the BON, as a family member.
    Last edit by Mrs. SnowStormRN on May 30, '11
  10. 2
    Eh, I worked in a clinical research organization and there were a few "nurses" who "forgot" to renew their licenses, yet continued to wear a name tag that said LPN or RN and sign LPN or RN after their name. Although the nurse manager and HR were obligated to verify all credentials and licenses they never got around to it for some. One 'nurse' would continually "forget" to bring in a copy of their license to show that it was current, yet neither the nurse manager nor HR ever considered verifying licenses with the BoN.

    Until a client did, and it was a REALLY big deal. The client had written the protocol with certain tasks to be specifically delegated to licensed nurses and other tasks could be delegated to trained but not necessarily licensed clinical personal (such as lab techs, clinical assistants, phlebotomists). The company had to report the deviation to the IRB and other authorities. The study was still in progress so certain aspects needed to be repeated to be in compliance with the protocol as written.

    Someone anonymously reported nurses without current licenses practicing as nurses and using the RN/LPN title to the BoN. (The nurse manager did have to answer to the BoN, I know the NM left the job shortly thereafter but I'm not sure the exact reason was related to failure to verify nursing licenses or other isses.)

    There were a lot of staffing changes and policy changes after the IRB & BoN got involved.

    It was an interesting situation considering one of the non-renewed licensed nurses is one of the individuals who got the BoN involved when the company didn't want to include RN/LPN on name badges as required by law.

    Ultimately it is fraud and illegal to use credentials that you do not have. If she in fact has a BSN, then she is entitled to list that credential after her name.

    But like other posters said, rather than play detective and speculate what is going on and why, you need to either confront your relative, make a report, or drop the issue.
    Chin up and caliotter3 like this.
  11. 0
    Quote from Argo
    Not saying her actions are not wrong, they are illegal.... but why are you tracking her down like some sort of detective? Either report her to the board and done with it or do nothing... all your doing by posting stuff everywhere and talking to her other family members is spreading the drama, being a gossip, stuff like that. I mean come on, you took the effort to call the bne and ask them already, they know more than we can predict. After all, we would be predicting what action they would be taking.
    It sounds weird, but initially I was bored. I've googled family members just to see what pops up, and when I saw that, I thought, "Uh...so...she did?" It peaked my curiosity, and at this point, I'm wondering what it does to the research. Does it disqualify the research?


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