Nurse Misconduct Claim? What a Nurse Can Do.

Despondent NurseNurses deal directly with people and they do so often during high-stress situations for the patient and for accompanying family members. We all know that it is hard to keep ourselves collected when under duress, and it is even more so when we feel helpless or in fear for our health. Many people lash out at those surrounding them when they are experiencing moments like this and frequently nurses are recipients of not-so-nice treatment from those to whom they are trying to provide care. What happens when the words or physical actions of a patient are enough to cause the nurse to respond harshly? What happens when a nurse is accused of being abusive and the nurse feels they acted fairly?

Misconduct Defined

Each state will have its own specific definition of nurse misconduct.

In Arizona, the Arizona State Board of Nursing clearly sets forth what is considered misconduct on their website, which can be viewed here.

In addition to state definitions, each organization a nurse works for should make their policies regarding misconduct clear upon hiring. The organization should let it be known how patient complaints are handled within the department they are working for and their policy on reporting to higher authorities. Additionally, each employer should have a methodology in place to help nurses avoid getting complaints, such as high-risk awareness and educating nurses to know when and how to call for additional staff support.

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What a Nurse Can Do When Accused of Misconduct

If a nurse is being accused of conduct that could result in suspension or dismissal in Arizona, there is a process in place by the Arizona State Board of Nursing. The Board will investigate and collect statements and written documentation from all involved to be presented before the Board. Read the details of this process here.

While going through the process, a nurse under investigation can seek legal advice and obtain representation. An attorney that specializes in representing health professionals can provide an outside point of view, putting in perspective the likely outcome based on their experience. An attorney can also help clarify the process and will know what rights a nurse has in situations where they are being accused of abuse or misconduct. Additionally, an attorney that specializes in these situations will likely be able to review any documents the nurse has to fill out in response to the claim and can help prepare a nurse for proceedings such as a hearing or deposition even if the attorney isn’t retained as legal counsel of record.

Laws Protecting Nurses

Many states have organizations that are working to protect nurses from situations that can impair their ability to perform their job. Improved working conditions enable the nurses to perform to a higher ability, resulting in better patient care and reducing the odds of disgruntled patients. Nurse protection laws are also being enacted to protect nurses from being abused.

Nursing Jobs in Arizona

Desert Medical Careers has worked with Arizona nurses for over 19 years to find them the best work environments and positions. We staff healthcare jobs in Central Phoenix, North Phoenix, Anthem, Peoria, Scottsdale, Tempe, Queen Creek, and West Phoenix.