Discipline Of A Nurse In Texas ~ Agreed Orders
The Texas Board of Nursing (BON) licenses and regulate all nurses who practice in Texas. One of the primary missions of the BON is to ensure that nurses are adhering to the Nursing Practice Act (NPA).
Each year, on average, the Texas nursing board receives more than 16,000 complaints. If a complaint or allegation seems to have merit and falls under the board’s jurisdiction, the BON opens an investigation, which typically takes five to twelve months.
At the end of the investigation, the nursing board might dismiss the case. But if the BON believes that there've been violations of the Nursing Practice Act, it may offer a proposed “Agreed Order” or Informal Settlement, to the nurse. This Agreed Order contains not only the findings of the BON’s investigation, but also proposed disciplinary sanctions and stipulated agreements that are designed to ensure that the nurse will practice safely.
The disciplinary sanctions that the nursing board can level against nurses range from mild to severe, and include:
- warning or reprimand
- remedial education requirements
- public service / community service requirements
- supervision of nursing practice
- limitations on nursing practice
- random drug testing
- denial of nursing licensure
- suspension of nursing license
- revocation of nursing license
- voluntary surrender of nursing license
If you do not agree with the Agreed Order that’s proposed by the nursing board, you may submit suggested revisions.
Throughout the entire nursing license defense process, you have the right to be represented by an attorney. When you are reviewing an Agreed Order, however, it can be particularly helpful to have an attorney by your side.
We can help negotiate the terms of your Agreed Order and/or request an informal settlement conference, (which is similar to mediation).
When you’re in the middle of a nursing board investigation, it might seem easier to just “go along to get along.” But the ramifications of an Agreed Order can have a profound impact on your nursing career and your livelihood. At a time when you might already be scared and confused, it can be hard to think clearly and make good long-term decisions. Before you sign the Agreed Order, you have options; once it’s signed, you’ll be forced to accept the terms and abide by them.
In a free consultation, we’d be happy to talk your situation with you and discuss your options.
For more information about Agreed Orders and disciplinary sanctions, or to schedule a free consultation, call (512) 829-5619, or e-mail email@example.com.
Note: Kevin Keaney has more than 30 years experience as an attorney. Prior to become a lawyer, Kevin earned his BSN degree from the School of Nursing at the University of Texas at Austin and worked as a nurse for four years. He’s licensed to practice law in Texas, Oregon, and Washington, and he’s a member of the American Association of Nurse Attorneys (TAANA).