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How false advertising can risk a nursing professional’s license

On Behalf of | Feb 22, 2024 | Nursing License Defense |

In California, nurses have the opportunity to market their services. This strategy can be a powerful tool in establishing a professional image and winning the trust of potential patients. However, they must be honest and transparent in the way they present their skills and offerings.

Any false advertising could put their careers at risk.

What the law says about misleading advertising

The state has clear laws about advertising. It prohibits any false or misleading ads about services or skills. This rule applies to all professionals, including nurses. As health care providers, they must not:

  • Make false claims about their qualifications
  • Promise specific care results they can’t guarantee
  • Present anything other than factual and accurate information about their services

For instance, if a nurse falsely claims to be a certified pediatric specialist, this could be interpreted as making a false claim about qualifications. Similarly, if a nurse promises that a certain treatment will definitely cure a chronic condition without any scientific evidence to back it up, this could be seen as promising specific care results that cannot be guaranteed.

Exaggerating or distorting facts is not only against the law but also goes against rules set by the California Board of Registered Nursing. Violation of these rules could lead to disciplinary actions.

Failure to comply could lead to consequences

Violations of these advertising laws could result in misdemeanor charges, with penalties that may include a six-month jail term, a fine up to $2,500 or both. The Board can also take action. It may issue a reprimand, mandate additional training or suspend the nurse’s license. In severe cases, the Board could revoke the nurse’s license entirely, preventing them from continuing to practice in California.

Importance of staying truthful

False advertising is not a matter that health care professionals should take lightly. All nurses must understand these rules and ensure their advertising practices follow the law. This includes accurately representing their qualifications, services and prices. Failure to do so could damage their reputation and lead to misdemeanor charges. Individuals in these situations should consider consulting a legal professional. They can help understand their rights and potential defenses in such situations.

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