State of Nevada

Nevada State Board of Nursing
". . . protecting the public's health, safety and welfare 
through effective nursing regulation . . ."

Seal of Nevada

 

Complaint and Investigation Process

WHAT IS THE NEVADA STATE BOARD OF NURSING?
The Nevada State Board of Nursing (NSBN) is the state agency which licenses, regulates and disciplines the practice of Registered Nurses (RNs), Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs), Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs), Advanced Practitioners of Nursing (APNs) and Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs).

The mission of the Nevada State Board of Nursing is protecting the public's health, safety and welfare through the effective regulation of nursing.

CONSUMER RIGHTS
As a consumer you have the right to be treated by a safe and competent nurse or nursing assistant including the right to confidentiality and privacy during your care. You have the right to file a complaint with the Board if you feel your care was substandard. In addition, according to NRS 449.710 you specifically have the right to information concerning facility, treatment and billing. Every patient of a medical facility or facility for the dependent has the right to obtain information concerning the professional qualifications or associations of the persons who are treating him and to receive the name of the person responsible for coordinating his care in the facility.

WHAT DOES DISCIPLINE OF NURSES OR NURSING ASSISTANTS MEAN?
If a licensed nurse or nursing assistant breaks the law, meaning they have violated the Nurse Practice Act, the NSBN has the authority to investigate and if warranted take disciplinary action against the nurse or nursing assistant. Disciplinary action taken can include denial, reprimand, fine, suspension, probation or revocation of licensure or certification.

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE VIOLATIONS FOR WHICH A NURSE OR NURSING ASSISTANT CAN BE DISCIPLINED?

  • Unprofessional conduct.
  • Negligence or abuse.
  • Problems with drugs, alcohol, or emotional instability.
  • Incompetence.
  • Criminal convictions related to the qualifications, functions and duties of a nurse.

HOW DO I FILE A COMPLAINT AGAINST A NURSE OR NURSING ASSISTANT?
All complaints must be submitted in writing to the NSBN. A complaint form is available and may be obtained through the NSBN offices in Reno and Las Vegas or a signed, written description of the sequence of events (who, what, where, when, why, how) may be submitted. The written complaint must be signed by the complainant. By law, the NSBN cannot act on anonymous complaints. The complaint must include the name of the nurse and a detailed description of the alleged behavior which violates the Nurse Practice Act. The complaint should also include any documentation which supports the complaint, for example a witness statement or patient record. A consumer, other regulatory agencies, another nurse or professional, or , anyone with knowledge of the alleged violation. Some nurses report themselves to the NSBN and seek assistance in handling a problem in a way that best protects the public.

WHAT HAPPENS AFTER A COMPLAINT IS FILED AGAINST A NURSE OR NURSING ASSISTANT?
When a complaint is received by the NSBN, it is evaluated for these criteria:

  1. Does the NSBN have jurisdiction over the individual;
  2. Is there face value evidence that a violation of the Nevada Nurse Practice Act has occurred.

If these criteria are met an investigation is initiated. During the investigation the NSBN cannot disclose information regarding the pending complaint. Information becomes public when the NSBN hears the case. Should the evidence not substantiate the allegations, the complaint may be dismissed or closed. Unsubstantiated complaints are not considered public record; however, information regarding the complaint and the investigation will remain on file and may be pursued in response to any future complaints against the nurse or nursing assistant. Should the evidence obtained during the investigation substantiate the allegations, a formal hearing before the NSBN will be conducted. At that hearing, the NSBN may take action to deny, revoke, suspend, fine, reprimand the license to practice, or place the nurse on probation. The NSBN may also order chemical dependency treatment, psychiatric treatment, or additional education as a condition for licensure. All decisions are based on how to best protect the public's health, safety, and welfare. 

Click here for a PDF file of a fact sheet which details what happens when a complaint is filed against a nurse or nursing assistant.

HOW DO I OBTAIN A COMPLAINT FORM?
A complaint form may be obtained by printing it from this web site under the Link "Consumer Information," or by calling the consumer hot line at 1-888-590-6726. Click here to go to the Complaint Form


Return to the Disciplinary Actions Page Return to the NSBN Home Page