The Board of Registered Nursing investigated our client's role in treatment of a hospital patient after a malpractice settlement. Our client was one of several nurses involved in the patient's treatment. The malpractice lawsuit alleged professional negligence against the treating physicians and hospital. One of the allegations was that the administration of a single medication was delayed. The hospital settled the case and allocated a small percentage of responsibility to our client without the nurse's knowledge. Years later, a Special Investigator from the Board of Registered Nursing requested an investigation interview with our RN client. We understood this to be an investigation into whether the Registered Nurse was grossly negligent.
Prior to permitting the investigator to interview our client, we obtained the actual complaint against our client from the Board of Registered Nursing, which is authorized by Business and Professions Code section 800 (c). We also obtained cooperation from the hospital, which confirmed in writing its position that the RN had not been grossly negligent or incompetent.
We represented our client in an investigation interview where we provided performance reviews and other documentation showing that our client is an excellent registered nurse. We also provided information as to the possible reasons for delay in administration of the medication and showed that patient's harm was caused by other factors.
We also asserted the defense of Laches, which means unreasonable delay by the administrative agency. As a result of the delay in this case, the registered nurse had no memory of the patient which affected our ability to provide a defense.
After the investigation, the Board of Registered Nursing referred this case to the Office of Attorney General, but the Deputy Attorney General declined to file an Accusation charging gross negligence, incompetence or unprofessional conduct and the Board of Registered Nursing closed its investigation without commencing a disciplinary action.
We are California license defense attorneys representing registered nurses (RN) in investigations and administrative hearings.