All Nurses Deserve Due Process Prior to Punishment

Posted by Joseph D. Lento | Jul 10, 2023 | 0 Comments

“Due process” is a set of legal proceedings that have been established by the hospital - in this case. They are meant to protect the victim and the accused individual's rights and ensure that if someone has violated their set rules and standards, they are being held responsible for it. Sometimes, though, individuals are not given the chance to defend themselves and are let go instead. This is typically to protect the reputation of the organization they work for, but it has serious negative consequences for the accused.

If you or someone you know has been reported for a conduct violation or let go from their position without a chance to defend themselves, Lento Law Firm Team can help. Call today.

Nurse Fired After Endangerment Accusation

In April 2023, Amanda Burke, a 29-year-old RN at Good Samaritan University Hospital, was charged with endangering the welfare of a child after allegedly slamming an infant face down into a bassinet. The baby's father witnessed - and recorded - the incident and alerted hospital staff. Burke was sent home, and the hospital supposedly investigated the issue before firing her a few hours later.

The hospital also reported Burke to the New York Department of Health, but her license has yet to be suspended. An arraignment was held in early May 2023, and if found guilty at trial, it could mean the loss of her nursing license as well as up to 264 days in jail or a 3-year probation supervision as well as mandatory fines and surcharges.

Prevent Nursing License Loss

Like all medical professionals, nurses are required to follow certain standards of care. When they violate these standards, the hospital is supposed to launch an investigation and give the nurse an opportunity to defend themselves. In this case, Burke was fired within a few hours of the allegations being made, which begs the question, how in-depth was this investigation? Did they give her a chance to speak? Or did they simply punish her with no due process?

While this case involves a criminal charge as well, most nurses that lose their licenses do not lose them from criminal convictions. The child in question did not exhibit any injuries, and the father may not have understood why the nurse behaved the way she did - if she did behave that way. And now, she is facing both a criminal conviction and a license sanction.

How a Professional Licensure Defense Team Can Help

If you are found responsible for violating a professional or ethical standard, it will affect your nursing license, which will seriously affect the rest of your life. Not only could you be fired from your job, like Burke, but you could become unemployable as a nurse, forcing you to potentially move, suffer mental and emotional issues, or have to uproot your life to remove yourself from the reputational harm.

Lento Law Firm's Professional License Defense Team understands how overwhelming these proceedings can be, especially if your employer or the state board of nursing fails to notify you of your right to counsel. They will help you gather evidence and witness testimony that will strengthen your defense and mitigate any negative ramifications you might experience. Call 888-535-3686 today or schedule a consultation online.

About the Author

Joseph D. Lento

"I pride myself on having heart and driving hard to get results!" Attorney Joseph D. Lento has unparalleled experience fighting for the futures of his professional clients nationwide. With unparalleled experience occupying several roles in the justice system outside of being an attorney, Joseph D. Lento can give you valuable behind-the-scenes insight as to what is happening during all phases of the legal process. In the courtroom and in life, attorney Joseph D. Lento stands up when the bell rings!


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