The BON enforces the Nursing Practice Act and BON Rules and Regulations by setting minimum standards for nursing practice and nursing education, conducting investigations of complaints against nurses, and adjudicating complaints. This is most often accomplished through informal settlement. If we are unable to settle informally with the nurse, we will proceed to formal, contested case resolution through the State Office of Administrative Hearings.
Time lines for enforcement services are as follows but may be delayed by formal contested resolution:
- Resolution of Complaints: In FY 2012, the BON received 16,631 jurisdictional complaints and closed 13,261 of the complaints through investigations - 51% of the cases within 6 months, 62% within 6-12 months, 72% within 18 months, and 80% within 21 months. The average resolution time for jurisdictional complaints was 304 calendar days. The BON received a total of 8 additional investigator positions - 3 RN investigators and 5 CJ investigators - during FY 2012 and FY 2013. In addition, the agency has developed performance measures that will be implemented at the beginning of FY 2014. Our plan is to improve on our case resolution time lines through adherence to the newly formulated performance measures by all assigned staff.
- Complainants receive letters on the status of their complaints every 180 days and, if a case is unresolved after 1 year, a letter of explanation is sent to the complainant.
- Complaints can be filed at any time against a nurse by completing a written complaint form transmitted by US mail, fax, or e-mail. The form is available by several venues. A toll-free number hosted by the Health Professions Council receives complaints against various health care professionals. Following receipt of a call to this number, a complaint form is mailed to the complainant. The form is also available at the BON's web site along with explanations of the complaint process. Complaints are also received over the telephone in the agency and a form is then mailed to the complainant.