Can Past Discipline from the Arizona Nursing Board be Removed from Nursys? | Disciplinary Case
So, can past discipline from the Arizona Nursing Board be removed from NURSYS?
No, under current Arizona Board of Nursing (“Board”) laws, the Board cannot remove past discipline from NURSYS (the national database for verification of nurse licensure).
In 2018, the Board moved license verification from the Board’s website to NURSYS. Previous Board policy removed all disciplinary actions from a nurse’s record after five years. It is no longer the policy.
Disciplinary Actions Imposed by the Arizona Board of Nursing
- Voluntary Surrender
- Probation (Consent Agreement)
- Civil Penalty
- Decree of Censure
Two Options for Discipline Case Removal
Per Nursys rules, there are effectively only two ways for a discipline case to be removed or deleted from the database:
- Board Error: If discipline has been attached to your license by error, the Board can correct this and delete the incorrect report.
- Expungement of Case: Arizona Board of Nursing currently does not offer any past disciplinary case expungement. There would need to be a change in Arizona law for this to become an option.
Formal Disciplinary Action
A voluntary surrender will place a permanent mark on a nurse’s record.
Thus, a nurse must make sure they are making an informed decision. Voluntary surrender is when a licensee voluntarily surrenders a professional license or voluntarily agrees not to renew one’s license, usually to resolve an outstanding complaint instead of going through the investigatory process that could lead to discipline, suspension, or revocation.
Voluntary surrender is considered formal discipline. Any formal disciplinary action from the Arizona Nursing Board is reported to NURSYS and the National Practitioner Database.
What is NURSYS?
NURSYS is a comprehensive national database that enables nurses to gain access to information about their practice privileges and the state board they registered with. Employers can also use this service because it helps them verify whether someone meets the necessary requirements on licensing, discipline history, and past employment records from one source.
Under current Arizona law, once a disciplinary action is reported to NURSYS from the Arizona Nursing Board, one can never remove it. They used to remove the disciplinary actions from the Board’s website after five years. However, that policy has changed now that the Board no longer hosts its own license verification.
Decree of Censure
So, Is a Decree of Censure from The Arizona Nursing Board Public?
Yes, a decree of censure is considered formal discipline, and the Board reports it to NURSYS (the national database verifying nurse licensure). So, a decree of censure would always show up if an employer were to verify your license on NURSYS.
What is a Decree of Censure?
A decree of censure is the lowest level of formal discipline. There are no probationary requirements, but the Order will be listed on NURSYS forever. Under current Arizona Board of Nursing (“Board”) laws, one cannot remove past discipline from NURSYS (the national database for verification of nurse licensure).
In 2018, the Board moved license verification from the Board’s website to NURSYS. Previous Board policy removed all disciplinary actions from a nurse’s record after five years.
Allegations that Could Lead To Disciplinary Action
There are certain allegations that can cause a nurse to receive disciplinary action. These include:
- Improper record keeping
- Reporting false information
- Physical abuse of patients
- Sexual abuse of patients
- Criminal convictions
- Substance Abuse
- Disruptive Conduct
Arizona Nurses Complaint
Any discipline a nurse receives from the Arizona Board of Nursing depends upon the violation. There’s a whole range of disciplines that can occur.
Not only can a license be revoked, but there can also be a denial of certification or licensure. There can also be civil penalties. Sometimes the Board requires a voluntary surrender of the license or a probation period.
Can You be a Nurse with a Misdemeanor in Arizona?
Nurses contact our board of nursing attorney and frequently ask, “does state law allow a nurse with a criminal misdemeanor conviction to get a license with the Arizona State Board of Nursing?”
The short answer is yes. A misdemeanor for an Arizona nurse will not necessarily prevent a nurse (like an RN, LPN, or NP) from obtaining a license or a career in the health or medical field.
The Board will investigate past misdemeanor charges that have resulted in a conviction. It helps the Board ensure the nurse can perform safe patient care despite a conviction on their record.
Disclosing a Misdemeanor on a Nurse Application (DUI)
If a nursing applicant is not required to disclose a misdemeanor, the Board can still initiate an investigation based on the results of a fingerprint background check. The Board then contacts the nurse and starts an investigation utilizing the Arizona Nurse Practice Act law.
The investigation determines whether the nurse is a danger to the public, has any medical or mental health problems, and whether the nurse has been rehabilitated since the misdemeanor or charges occurred. The Board wants to know whether the applicant can provide safe nursing care.
The attorneys at Chelle Law assist nurses with interpreting Board policy (generally contained on the Board website). They also help nurses with their application to show the Board the nurse isn’t a danger to the health, safety, and welfare of the public and can provide safe care.
Arizona Nursing Regulatory Journal Disciplinary Action
The Arizona Board of Nursing publishes a report detailing Arizona Nursing Regulatory Journal Disciplinary Action of all disciplinary action regarding licensed nursing assistants (LNA), registered nurses (RN), licensed practical nurses (LPN), and Nurse Practitioners in the Arizona State Board of Nursing Quarterly Regulatory Journal (Journal).
The Report not only lists currently licensed or certified nurses, but any applicants or re-applicants that the Board has denied certification or licensure.
The Report lists in detail the following:
- The effective date of the disciplinary action
- Nurse’s name
- Certificate number
- Discipline taken
- Nature of the violation
Using a Nursing Title
In Arizona, some laws regulate who can use specific nursing titles. The nurse must follow these Arizona Nursing Title Restrictions restrictions strictly. If they’re not, they can lead to severe consequences with the Arizona Board of Nursing. Individuals who use a title they have not legally obtained can face disciplinary actions. People who use a title of a license or have had their license revoked also fall under this category.
Arizona Licensed Practical Nurse
Only when an individual holds a valid license to practice practical nursing in Arizona may they use the title licensed practical nurse, nurse, or practical nurse or use the initials LPN after their name. They may also use those titles if registered in a state part of the Nursing License Compact.
Arizona Registered Nurses
Only when a person holds a valid license to practice as an RN can they use the title nurse, registered nurse, or professional nurse or the initials RN after their name. They may also use those titles if registered in a state part of the Nursing License Compact.
Arizona Nurse Practitioner
Only when an individual holds a valid certificate to practice in Arizona as a registered nurse practitioner may they use the title registered nurse practitioner, nurse midwife, or nurse practitioner. The person must also indicate their specialty area of certification.
A strong response can put you in the best possible position to avoid discipline and keep your name out of the Journal. If you have a question about Arizona Nursing Regulatory Journal Disciplinary Action, contact Chelle Law.
Consultation with Chelle Law
If you’re interested in learning more about our Arizona Nursing Board Discipline services and how to protect your rights, set up a consultation with Chelle Law and our Arizona Nursing Attorney. Reach out to us today.