Friday, February 13, 2009

Support HB 998, Support Nurses

I am asking you to take a few minutes to contact your State Representative and your State Senator and ask them to support HB 998.

I have told you of the frustration I face before the Board of Nursing when it comes to fighting a decision at the Board and I have blogged about it. Currently, if a nurse chooses to go to an administrative hearing before a Judge and fight the Board, the nurse can get a favorable decision by the Judge only to have the Board overturn the Judge's recommendation. This means the nurse must spend more time and money to appeal the case before District Court.

There have even been instances of other Boards (my example is the Texas Medical Board) overturning the Judge's decision to revoke a license which then allowed a physician to continue harming patients (he was nick-named Dr. Death by the media). So, the current system has the potential to harm not only licensees, but also the public. Plus, it is not a fair and just system.

HB 998 will change the current system to make the Judge's decision be the final decision and then if either the licensee or the Board wants to appeal it, they have to go to District Court. This is a great bill and we need to make sure that it gets passed. If you want to give personal examples of where the current system impacted you, please do so because it shows that you are very interested in getting the law changed. Letters and phone calls have more impact than emails, but something is better than not contacting them at all.

You can find out who represents you in the State Legislature by going to Texas Legislature online. On the right hand side is a "Who Represents Me?"

Please take a few minutes to help Texas nurses and you never know, you may be helping yourself.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I wonder, in the interest of justice and judicial economy, whether it may be a good idea to require licensed medical professionals to serve as "quasi" jurors during ALJ hearings. The jury pool would be the Texas licensees themselves and they would be chosen to serve as a juror at random. That way the decision is not given to one individual ... a single ALJ decision maker (i.e., bench trial). Just a thought!