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Nursing license defense: Understanding disciplinary terminology

Anytime a California registered nurse faces a disciplinary action, it must always be considered a threat to your license. Like any real threat, developing a strategic response is critical. You worked hard to acquire your license and protecting your career is a top priority. In order to accomplish this, understanding the disciplinary terms you may hear or read during an investigation is crucial.

In an ideal world, those who hold a professional license would already understand such terminology. However, the world is not always ideal and most professionals use their time to work instead of learning about any terminology they may one day face.

In the interests of helping you address a nursing license defense before you even need it, the following section contains some disciplinary terms that often confuse professionals.

  • Conditional license: If you hear this, it means you may still be licensed but that you may be placed on probation and monitored by the nursing board.
  • Default decision: If you fail to provide a nursing license defense, this term means that any charges made against you may be deemed true.
  • Surrendered or revoked license: This means you are no longer licensed to practice as a registered nurse.
  • Reproval or reprimand: One of the less serious terms, this means you have received a reprimand but are free to practice without limitations.
  • PC 23: This typically means that a judge has issued an order barring you from practicing or restricting how you may practice.
  • Statement of issues: This is a document used to formalize charges that you have violated the Nursing Practice Act.

As you can see, there is a lot to learn about disciplinary actions against nurses. If you are uncomfortable facing these issues alone, a nursing license defense attorney can act as your advocate and help you protect your license to practice in California.

Source: California Board of Registered Nursing, "Disciplinary Actions and Reinstatements," accessed Jan. 19, 2018

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