July 10, 2011

Know Your State Practice Act & Expectations

Updated: November 4, 2016


Every state has its own form of a practice act. It spells out what you need to know and what you're expected to do as a licensed, registered nurse. I know what you're thinking, I've already learned that in nursing school, right? Wrong! I just read, you could get fined and your license suspended if you misrepresent yourself. For example, if you're a registered nurse (with no certifications) but you advertise yourself as a diabetes nurse, that's a violation. Something simple as that could get you into a pickle. To be a specialized nurse of diabetes, you have to be certified, and that requires additional training. There are rules to nursing and going over the rules BEFORE you hit the floor is a good idea. Don't sweat the legalities word for word but, know what is expected of you. I've had many situations where things weren't clearly defined. You think you're doing something helpful or righteous when in reality it's unlawful. I'm not a lawyer nor do I advocate breaking the law but I do understand the human condition. The condition of assumption. You assume if you're trying to help, it has to be legal. This is not the case. I urge every medical professional to read their state practice act and understand their boundaries and professional responsibilities. Nursing is a passion of mine and I will not allow assumptions or ignorance to prevent me from helping my community.

https://www.ncsbn.org/nurse-practice-act.htm