Mother of 6 Lost Nursing License X 2 and Job

  1. Dear Nurse Beth,
    I really need some advice. 8 years ago I was working at a hospital in a state up north. I had a patient


    that coded. After several attempts at resuscitation the patient passed away. I was heartbroken as any nurse would be because we do this job because of the patients...not the hospital.




    I did all that the hospital asked of me. They stated "We love you and we are here if you need us"

    My husband and I moved to a new state and I started a new job. After a few months I received a phone call from the BON in the state up north. They said a complaint had been filed against me from the hospital where the patient had passed away.

    I was devastated. I immediately told my nurse manager and my director what was going on because I felt that honesty was the best policy. They said to keep them informed. I kept them informed.

    Again, I felt honesty was the best policy. Long story short, I ended up voluntarily surrendering my license in the state up north because honestly I didn't have the money to hire an out of state attorney to fight. I was the only breadwinner in a house with 6 kids. I told my nurse manager that I surrendered my license. She said ok and that I was doing an awesome job as the floor supervisor. Also, I had just been chosen as one of the top 10 employees out an extremely large hospital campus. It was a huge honor.

    The next day I was off and my director called and asked that I come in to meet with human resources. I said ok...I mean, again I tried to be honest. I walked into the room and I just felt glaring eyes looking at me. The manager of human resources asked what happen in the other state. I told her...I felt like I was on trial. She told me that I was a piece of crap and that I lied on my application.

    I told her that I did not, that the incident happened after I had accepted the position, then she called me a liar. Told me that I was terminated effective immediately and that she was going to make sure that I never worked in this state again.

    I left feeling just completely numb, disgraced and humiliated. I received a letter from the BON in the state where I was currently living in to appear. I went to the meeting. I had written a letter that I read begging for them to not take my license. The attorney who represented the board was the most unprofessional person that I had ever encountered. She kept giving me extremely glaring looks through the whole hearing.
    She said that I was a liar and that I should never practice as a nurse again. The BON suspended my license. They stated that once i got my license back in the northern state that I could reapply for a license and also after i paid $4000 in court costs to them.

    Once again I left so numb and humiliated. I felt like they were right...that I shouldn't be a nurse. I went into a very deep depression which put a huge strain on my marriage but my husband stayed by my side and loved me through it.
    I contacted the state up north to ask about reinstatement. They said that I was an excellent nurse in an unfortunate situation. They sent me the appropriate paperwork, I applied and completed a RN refresher course.
    Then a week later I received notice that my current state filed a judgement against me for the fine.Then later on I found out that the hospital in the state up north that I worked for was also using me as an example in their nurse orientation class. They talk about what a terrible nurse I was and also put my name in big bright red letters on an overhead. They use it as a scare tactic for nurses going to work there.

    I kind of gave up on ever coming up with that kind of money and still hold a conditional license in the state up north but it's going nowhere.

    I recently got offered my dream job as a marketing and sales rep for a wound care company. It was truly a blessing to finally be making the pay that more that I was making as a nurse. Finally after all these years something good had happened. Then yesterday after I had been on the job for 3 weeks they called and fired me.

    They stated that part of my background check had come back and that i was on the exclusion list. I didn't even know what that was. I was shocked and heartbroken. I looked up the Office of the Inspector General website and tried to search for myself on there but after trying my full name, my first name only, my last name only, even the first 3 letters of my first and last name nothing came up. What the heck do I do now? I desperately need some serious advice.


    Dear Lost My Nursing License Twice, Lost Three Jobs and Mother of Six,

    You need professional advice from an attorney specializing in nursing licensure.

    The BON is not your friend, as you now know. The BON's sole duty is to protect the public. An attorney's job is to protect you. Without knowing the details or knowing what your responsibility was for losing your license two times, (you do not offer any explanation), here's the current state:

    You voluntarily surrendered your license up north but completed reinstatement requirements and now hold a conditional license from up north state.. Finding a job with conditions on your license can be difficult, even if you did want to move back up north, because conditions require extra supervision and paperwork for employers. If the conditions are drug related, sometime dialysis clinics are more willing to work around licensure conditions than other employers, such as hospitals.

    Your license in your current state is suspended and a judgement has been filed to obtain the $4,000. Once the $4,000 is paid, you need to find out what the requirements are to reinstate your license. You will then choose either to meet the requirements or not.

    You landed a great non-nursing job but then you were promptly fired for being on the exclusion list? I do not know what the exclusion list is, perhaps it is internal, but organizations in most states can usually hire/fire employees at will. All we know for sure is something came up in your background check and they no longer wanted you as an employee. On your application, were all questions regarding past employment or legal infractions answered fully?

    There are some missing pieces here and you really need an attorney to sort this all out. Clinically, there is more to this than a code where the patient died despite your best resuscitation efforts.

    Licensure and disclosure-wise-does your current (southern state) BON require you to notify them in a timely manner of discipline by another BON, and did you?

    You must find out what the background information is that caused you to be fired. "Deep" background checks are employed by BONs and by some employers, and involve an FBI level check. Whatever it is, it's likely to pop up again, and you will always be fearful.

    A second concern an attorney can help you with is possible defamation of character by the up north hospital. You need an attorney because it may be public record and therefore not admissible.

    I truly hope you can get this straightened out and behind you.

    Best wishes,

    Nurse Beth

    Author, "Your Last Nursing Class: How to Land Your First Nursing Job"...and your next!
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    About Nurse Beth, MSN, RN

    Joined: Mar '07; Posts: 1,438; Likes: 4,302

    15 Comments

  3. by   beekee
    The exclusion list is probably the OIG exclusion list. And this story is why you should never proceed in a disciplinary action without advice from a lawyer well-versed in licensing matters. Surrendering a license after a complaint in one state is almost always going to initiate disciplinary action in any other state where a license in held.
  4. by   LadysSolo
    Good luck to you, and if you go back into nursing, PLEASE always carry malpractice insurance (an "occurrence" policy,) it is CHEAP compared to what you have gone through, they will provide you with a lawyer to protect YOUR interests!
  5. by   Mavrick
    Quote from Nurse Beth
    There are some missing pieces here and you really need an attorney to sort this all out. Clinically, there is more to this than a code where the patient died despite your best resuscitation efforts.

    Nurse Beth
    I get real suspicious of a story that starts out, "I was sittin' on the porch readin' my Bible and didn't do nuthin".

    OP, it is indeed a mess you are in. Not dealing with the situation in the Up North State and surrendering your license was a misguided effort at hoping it would all go away. In this inter-connected world don't count on being in another state as any kind of protection.

    Nursys.com will have a record of your suspension, disciplinary action, probation etc. on file forever. There will always be a literal red flag on your license in the state that issues it whether your license is active or not. Any future employer or member of the public can log on and search for either your name or license number to find it.

    It is also quite possible there will be a PDF with all the gory details for anyone to click on.

    Honestly, you need to formulate a better story.
    Last edit by Mavrick on Feb 3
  6. by   Irish_Mist
    Quote from Mavrick
    I get real suspicious of a story that starts out, "I was sittin' on the porch readin' my Bible and didn't do nuthin".

    OP, it is indeed a mess you are in. Not dealing with the situation in the Up North State and surrendering your license was a misguided effort at hoping it would all go away. In this inter-connected world don't count on being in another state as any kind of protection.

    Nursys.com will have a record of your suspension, disciplinary action, probation etc. on file forever. There will always be a literal red flag on your license in the state that issues it whether your license is active or not. Any future employer or member of the public can log on and search for either your name or license number to find it.

    It is also quite possible there will be a PDF with all the gory details for anyone to click on.

    Honestly, you need to formulate a better story.
    There has got to be way more than what this poster is sharing. Wayyyyyy more.
  7. by   caliotter3
    Quote from Irish_Mist
    There has got to be way more than what this poster is sharing. Wayyyyyy more.
    Baby 7 is on the way.
  8. by   LadysSolo
    A key to what my suspicions are is "I did what the hospital asked of me." I was thinking the hospital may have asked her to leave things out in the code report, and then "threw her under the bus" when the family filed a lawsuit. That is why I recommended (of course I recommend it anyway) malpractice insurance so she could have had legal representation rather than go under the bus.
  9. by   Yep, Me
    No matter what you pay for, go hungry rather than skip on buying malpractice insurance!
    That being said:
    I had a similar situation: pt coded & DON asked me to "rewrite the code documents because they aren't clear" & back date them for the date of the code. I said I would write an addendum, with a list from Admin about whatever was "unclear", but would not rewrite the original documents. After some pressure & me gently saying "you know what you're asking is illegal". Admin quit asking.
  10. by   Leader25
    I have seen dealers and users get their license back and find employment BUT they used an attorney or belonged to a union and had a union labor attorney.
  11. by   Ambersmom
    The exclusion list is most likely the OIG list and to be on that usually there is some aspect of fraud. Normally you can't get a judgement against you without a court hearing first... The northern hospital using OP's name as an example of bad nursing may be slander then again it may not be if what they say is factual. OP I highly encourage you to speak with an attorney. Its terrible this has happened but its a huge tangled web, with many unknown pieces and you need someone who knows the full story, ie attorney, who can help serve your best interests. Good luck.
  12. by   ms04drip
    I'm really confused, did you run the code alone?? Something is not right and missing, purpously omitted!!
  13. by   jodispamodi
    Quote from ms04drip
    I'm really confused, did you run the code alone?? Something is not right and missing, purpously omitted!!
    I wonder what "after several attempts at resuscitation" means... Did the patient code several times? Or were different methods tried.
  14. by   SobreRN
    I get real suspicious of a story that starts out, "I was sittin' on the porch readin' my Bible and didn't do nuthin".

    You gave me a good laugh with this one!

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