It is extremely rare for nurses to lose their licenses. However, over 180,000 people work as nurses in the state of New York alone, according to data collected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Although most of their licenses are safe, some will not be as lucky.
There is a variety of circumstances under which a person can lose a nursing license. Negligence and diverting medications are some of the most common explanations, but there are other reasons. They may be rare, but they have occurred in the past.
1. Impersonating a different licensed practitioner
There are several different reasons why nurses impersonate someone else to obtain a license. It is possible for a nurse to have a license revoked in the past and apply for a new one under a different alias. Some nurses have a felony conviction that prevent them from getting a license through legal means. Sometimes, it takes years for the proper authorities to realize a nurse is impersonating someone else.
2. Using a false copy of a license
Some nurses will have a license temporarily suspended for a minor infraction. To keep working, a nurse will make a fake copy to provide to patients and authorities. They assume it will not matter once the suspension is over. However, this is a serious infraction that can result in permanent loss of license.
3. Conducting job unprofessionally
This is a broad phrase used to encompass a variety of behaviors. It can include something as minimal as using inappropriate language at the workplace. Many times, a first offense may result in a small reprimand or perhaps a license suspension.
4. Performing mail fraud
The mail fraud in this instance does not necessarily have to relate to nursing. It can relate to stealing someone else’s mail or running an at-home mailing scam. A conviction for something completely unrelated to a person’s profession can result in termination of the license.