Arizona Board of Nursing LPN Investigative Questionnaire

The Arizona Board of Nursing (“Board”) licenses, certifies, investigates and disciplines all licensed practical nurses (“LPN”s) practicing in Arizona.  The Board can initiate an investigation during the following situations:

  • During the application process
  • If the nurse self-reports a violation
  • When a complaint is filed against the nurse

Read about the Arizona Board of Nursing Complaint and Discipline process.  Any time the Board proceeds with an investigation into a possible act of unprofessional conduct by a LPN, the investigator will send the nurse a Questionnaire.  There are a number of different types of Questionnaires that the Board will request the nurse to fill out.  This post will examine the Investigative Questionnaire sent to the nurse during an investigation involving possible acts of unprofessional conduct.

The Investigative Questionnaire will ask for a detailed description of the event(s), in addition to, a detailed employment history for the last five years.  It is important to keep detailed records of all documents associated with past employment.

If patient care is at issue during the investigation the LPN will have to give detailed information as to the patient at issue including relevant outcomes, diagnoses, and facility information.

Receiving an Investigative Questionnaire can be a scary thing for any nurse, but it is important that you seek an attorney prior to responding to any request for information from the Board.  A lawyer experienced in dealing with Board investigations can help you prepare a proper and thorough response.

If you have any questions about an Arizona Board of Nursing LPN Investigative Questionnaire please contact Chelle Law.

Arizona Board of Nursing Continuing Education Requirements

Currently, the Arizona Board of Nursing (“Board”) does not require continuing education for licensed practical and registered nurses.  However, attempts are being made by Arizona legislators to mandate 20 hours of continuing education per year for each licensed RN and LPN.  Over 30 states currently require some kind of continuing education for licensed nurses.  The goal of continuing education is to enhance the professional competence of the provider with the hope of improved health care.  Here are the Arizona Board of Nursing Practice Requirements.

Arizona does require that any licensed RN or LPN complete 960 hours of practice in a 5 year period to renew or obtain licensure.  The Board has stated that the following activities constitute practice:

  • Teaching nursing
  • Supervising care
  • Consulting
  • Clinical experience
  • Volunteering with a nursing organization
  • Health screenings
  • Caring for family members does not qualify as practice

New graduates must be licensed within 2 years of graduation or they must complete a refresher course once NCLEX has been passed.

If you have a question about Arizona Board of Nursing Continuing Education Requirements contact Chelle Law.

Avoid Arizona Nurse Charting Errors

Accurate documentation by nurses is an essential part of providing care.  Errors documented in medical records can be used by licensing Boards and attorneys to assess or prove negligence in the care provided to patients.  Precise and thorough documentation is a key factor in proving that proper care was given to a patient by the nurse.  Here are 5 tips to assure you are charting correctly:

  • Do not chart care that was not given
  • Avoid writing in the margins
  • Chart as soon as possible after care is given.
  • Only use abbreviations that are generally accepted within the industry
  • Simply chart the facts.  Do not include personal estimations of the care given or needed.

Every nurse is best served by keeping simple, legible and accurate charts.  This will help you avoid discipline from your licensing Board in addition to protecting yourself from possible litigation.

If you have more questions regarding how to Avoid Arizona Nurse Charting Errors contact Chelle Law.

Arizona Board of Nursing Administrative Violations

Arizona Board of Nursing Administrative ViolationsArizona law holds that a licensed nurse may be sanctioned by the Arizona Board of Nursing (“Board”) with an administrative penalty should they:

1.    Fail to timely renew a nursing license or nurse assistant certificate while continuing to practice nursing or engage in activities or duties related to nursing.

2.    Fail to notify the board in writing within thirty days after a change in address.

The law allows the Board to fine a nurse up to $1000.00 for a violation of the actions listed above, however, a fine of that amount is highly unlikely.  For failure to notify the Board of a change of address a nurse would likely receive a warning or nominal fine.

The Board has specifically defined the penalty amounts for practicing without a license assuming the nurse did not intend to deceive the Board by not renewing in a timely manner.

For RN/LPN’s the fines range from $100-500.00.  However, the Board will refer the nurse’s employer to the Arizona Department of Health Services (“DHS”) if the nurse is more than two months late in renewing their license.  Obviously, no employer likes to be referred to the DHS, so a nurse must be careful that they aren’t sanctioned by their employer as well.

For CNA’s the fines range from $25-75.00.  As with RN/LPN’s the Board will refer the nurse’s employer to the DHS if the nurse is more than two months late in renewing their license.

So, Arizona nurses must be careful and renew their licenses on time!  Failure to do so could not only open them up to administrative fines, but could also put their employer in jeopardy as well.

If you have any questions about Arizona Board of Nursing Administrative violations contact Arizona Attorney Robert Chelle.