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What would happen if I just surrendered my license?

Recovery   (792 Views 10 Comments)
by tostayaRN tostayaRN (New Member) New Member Nurse

117 Profile Views; 4 Posts

Recently caught, fired and tested positive for the substance. I was diverting medication from waste for two months. It quickly progressed, and just as fast ended. I have been clean for two months now and have just got the letter from the board of nursing wanting me to submit my case. 

I have never had an addiction, and am happier now not working as a bedside nurse. My using progressed from depression and stress of travel nursing. I just did not realize I had problem until I hit that rock bottom.

My question is, has anyone just surrendered their license? What would happen? I want to keep my license of course, but I would not be devastated to lose it. My heart just is not in nursing any longer.

Also  I have not had criminal charges yet, does that normally follow a board hearing? My defense attorney stated he could get me drug court and keep my record clean but would have a year of hoops to jump through. 

Anyone with advice or experience in this, I would greatly appreciate it. 

Edited by tostayaRN

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First, consult a lawyer. They can give you a better idea of the 'sentence' you will face. If you surrender you can be placed on the OIG list which will prevent you from doing anything with healthcare in the future. Potentially other fields as well.  

Surrendering makes getting it back SOOOO much harder if you change your mind. Think long and hard about this. 

The programs are hard, expensive, punitive, but you can do it! So many of us have pushed our way through and it is possible. You worked so hard for your license. 

 

Good luck my friend. 

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2 hours ago, berdeenbird said:

First, consult a lawyer. They can give you a better idea of the 'sentence' you will face. If you surrender you can be placed on the OIG list which will prevent you from doing anything with healthcare in the future. Potentially other fields as well.  

Surrendering makes getting it back SOOOO much harder if you change your mind. Think long and hard about this. 

The programs are hard, expensive, punitive, but you can do it! So many of us have pushed our way through and it is possible. You worked so hard for your license. 

 

Good luck my friend. 

I’ve spoken to a criminal defensive lawyer. Would it be the board who would place me on the oig list or the criminal part of it? 

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I dont know the answer to that. I think both can?? 

Do you have criminal charges coming your way? A nursing license lawyer can help lessen the punishment you will receive from  the board. 

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I think a lot of us had the same thoughts shortly after we got pegged. I myself looked into just surrendering my license and moving on, but am glad I waited. I am now very glad I didnt do that as it closes more doors than just nursing. depending on the state you are in, there are "alternative to discipline" programs you can enroll into. typically, if you do it before the board forces you into it, the ramifications are less. Just know that even if you surrender the license, the investigation into will still continue. Also, surrending a nursing license means that you surrender your ability to get any other kind of professional license - engineering, cosmetology, dental hygienist, etc. Through my struggles, I too have realized I dont want to continue my nursing career but I am in my state program so that I can keep my license. To me it is worth it. To some, it may not be. The OIG list , as mentioned, is another issue with surrendering. Surrendered is generally the same as revoked in the eyes on the BON and OIG. It is a very personal decision that shouldn't be made so soon after getting caught. Unfortunately criminal charges are getting more and more common for those of us who divert medications. I got mine nearly a year after my incident. Also, depending on who the procescutor is, a drug court/ diversion agreement isnt often given anymore. The attorney general prosecuted my case and she refused to go any less than a misdemeanor with formal probation. I too was a travel nurse, but was "caught" in the permanent position I took after deciding to stop traveling. So, with that, all of the other state licenses I got when I traveled are also investigating me. Extra stress, but still I choose to keep my license at all costs. I am now on criminal probation and my license is still clean and active, but I cannot find a job for the life of me. Nursing or not. Yet, having my nursing license still gives me the chance to at least try to find jobs in the field. 

From what I have been told, the final board hearing will wait for the criminal charges to finish becuase anything you say at the board hearing can be used in the criminal case. So they might give you an emergency temporary suspension until after criminal matters are resolved, if you arent in the states recovery program. If you want to keep your license, the best thing you can do for that is to look on your states BON website and see how to contact the recovery program. If you dont want to deal with that headache, the board will eventually suspend or possibly revoke your license. Every state is different, and every board runs at a different pace, but from what I've seen that's what happens. 

Congrats on your 2 months of sobriety. I completely understand the stress that lay with travel nursing. 

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If the hospital pressed criminal charges I think you would have already known. They might, mine didn't.  They agreed that if I reported myself they would not. If you self report to your alternative to discipline now before the board mandates it may be more favorable for you as you are being proactive.  It's easy to just say eff it and relinquish but it does have it's own ramifications with the OIG. Good luck whatever you  decide.  We have been in your shoes and you can come back from this!

 

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I have a new job as DON. I do not mess with medications. I was hoping they would keep me on but if they suspend my license I can’t keep this job. 

I don’t think my state has a program of that sort. I just feel like someone would have told me if I had criminal charges by now. I’m not sure how to even find out. I don’t want to be on probation in a state I don’t even want to live in. 

When would they suspend my license? I just want to walk away. Thank you for all the advice. 

I got the letter from the board should I get a lawyer for that? 

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2 hours ago, nurse.etc said:

I think a lot of us had the same thoughts shortly after we got pegged. I myself looked into just surrendering my license and moving on, but am glad I waited. I am now very glad I didnt do that as it closes more doors than just nursing. depending on the state you are in, there are "alternative to discipline" programs you can enroll into. typically, if you do it before the board forces you into it, the ramifications are less. Just know that even if you surrender the license, the investigation into will still continue. Also, surrending a nursing license means that you surrender your ability to get any other kind of professional license - engineering, cosmetology, dental hygienist, etc. Through my struggles, I too have realized I dont want to continue my nursing career but I am in my state program so that I can keep my license. To me it is worth it. To some, it may not be. The OIG list , as mentioned, is another issue with surrendering. Surrendered is generally the same as revoked in the eyes on the BON and OIG. It is a very personal decision that shouldn't be made so soon after getting caught. Unfortunately criminal charges are getting more and more common for those of us who divert medications. I got mine nearly a year after my incident. Also, depending on who the procescutor is, a drug court/ diversion agreement isnt often given anymore. The attorney general prosecuted my case and she refused to go any less than a misdemeanor with formal probation. I too was a travel nurse, but was "caught" in the permanent position I took after deciding to stop traveling. So, with that, all of the other state licenses I got when I traveled are also investigating me. Extra stress, but still I choose to keep my license at all costs. I am now on criminal probation and my license is still clean and active, but I cannot find a job for the life of me. Nursing or not. Yet, having my nursing license still gives me the chance to at least try to find jobs in the field. 

From what I have been told, the final board hearing will wait for the criminal charges to finish becuase anything you say at the board hearing can be used in the criminal case. So they might give you an emergency temporary suspension until after criminal matters are resolved, if you arent in the states recovery program. If you want to keep your license, the best thing you can do for that is to look on your states BON website and see how to contact the recovery program. If you dont want to deal with that headache, the board will eventually suspend or possibly revoke your license. Every state is different, and every board runs at a different pace, but from what I've seen that's what happens. 

Congrats on your 2 months of sobriety. I completely understand the stress that lay with travel nursing. 

 

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Grc_0117 is a RN and specializes in NICU.

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I am in the KARE PROGRAM and I have felonies. I don't think that being in the program has helped me at all for getting a job. I have found that there is not a lot of employers in my area that don't even know about it, adding to the stress of someone not hiring me due to my felonies. Yes, there probably will be charges regardless. Good luck!

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