You spend years building your skills and knowledge to become a nurse. When your license is threatened, it can endanger your reputation and your livelihood.
Facing suspension of your nursing license can feel like you are putting your life on hold. Depending on the cause of the action and the ruling of the Board, you may be able to petition to get your license reinstated.
Here’s what you should know about the reinstatement process for nursing licenses in California.
Getting it back takes time
Your ability to get your license back will depend on several factors, such as:
- The indiscretion that caused the suspension
- Any disciplinary action in place
- Willingness to wait
Whether your disciplinary action decision is still in progress or you are going through a suspension period, it is essential to start considering whether you will want to reinstate your license. There may be steps you can take to help you get your license back.
During your disciplinary hearing, the Board will tell you what requirements you need to meet if you want to reinstate your license. The Board may require actions during your suspension, such as:
- Continued education
- Demonstration of rehabilitation
- Inactive time
- Demonstration of change in character
Once you meet the Board’s specified criteria to become eligible, you must go through the application process. Typically, after you submit your application, you will go through a waiting period of about 11-12 months. After the waiting period, you will receive a date to testify before the Board. The request may also include a request for additional information to supplement your application.
Talking to the Board
Your testimony to the Board will include the Board members, an administrative law judge, a court reporter and members of the public (typically, nursing students). While it may be intimidating to talk to this panel of people, your testimony (and the questions that follow) is not about the indiscretion that caused the suspension.
Rather than focus on the initial disciplinary issue, your testimony to the Board is about the progress and rehabilitation you have made since your disciplinary hearing. It will be essential to focus on what you have accomplished to demonstrate that you are ready to work with patients and the public again safely.
It can be an intimidating and overwhelming process to get your nursing license back. However, the process is designed to help you move forward with your career as a nurse.