A nurse's practice and behavior is expected to be safe, competent, ethical and in compliance with applicable laws and rules. Any person who has knowledge of conduct by a licensed nurse that may violate a nursing law or rule or related state or federal law may report the alleged violation to the state board of nursing where the situation occurred.
If you believe that there is a problem with a nurse, ask yourself if the nurse's practice and/or behavior is:
Most states require a written and signed description of the practice or behavior. Many states have complaint forms available on their websites or you may call the board office to request information on filing a complaint. The board needs enough information to be able to determine:
Contact your state board of nursing for questions regarding confidentiality and how you, the complainant, may be involved in the process. Complaints should not be sent to NCSBN, as we have no authority over individual nurses.
NCSBN’s Adverse Events Decision Pathway for Nurse Leaders/Administrators is designed to assist nurse leaders and administrators in determining action steps for adverse events/errors or unprofessional conduct involving a nurse. The pathway provides questions regarding system error, mitigating factors and behavioral choices of the nurse which, when used with data from your investigation, will promote a consistent framework for making important patient safety decisions.