Vermont Nurses Face the Florida Nursing School Fraud Scandal

State licensing boards across the country are investigating nurses allegedly holding fraudulent Florida nursing school credentials, exposed in the nationwide Operation Nightingale enforcement initiative.

Expect Vermont's Board of Nursing to keep the same watchful eye. If you hold suspect Florida nursing school credentials, retain the Lento Law Firm's premier Professional License Defense Team for skilled and experienced defense representation. Call 888.535.3686 or go online now to address your Operation Nightingale nursing license issues.

Operation Nightingale Exposes Nursing School Scandal

The FBI and HHS Operation Nightingale enforcement action led to federal criminal fraud charges against dozens of officials with these now-closed Florida nursing schools:

  • MedLife Institute West Palm Beach;
  • Siena College;
  • Palm Beach School of Nursing;
  • Sacred Heart International Institute;
  • Quisqueya School of Nursing, also called Sunshine Academy; and
  • Quisqueya Health Care Academy.

The criminal charges allege evidence that the defendant officials sold thousands of fake associate's degrees and transcripts to aspiring nurses, many of them African or Haitian immigrants. Federal spokespersons have further alleged more than $100 million in profits from the fraud scheme after the involved nurses paid up to $15,000 each for the fraudulent credentials.

Nationwide Operation Nightingale Impacts

Press reports and nursing journals quoting the federal officials indicate the scandal's nationwide impact. Thousands of nurses nationwide now allegedly hold licenses, jobs, and nursing degrees from other schools under fraudulent credentials. Loss of those licenses, jobs, and degrees will worsen the current unprecedented nursing shortages, further stressing the nation's nursing profession and healthcare employers.

Nationwide Nursing Board Investigations

State nursing boards across the country are compounding the scandal's impact, investigating nurses who hold suspect Florida nursing school credentials. Those investigations have resulted in the revocation of many nursing licenses and the suspension or denial of other licenses. These actions follow the National Council of State Boards of Nursing statement urging boards across the country to take these enforcement actions. Vermont nurses should be ready to defend Vermont Board of Nursing investigations. The Lento Law Firm is available to help you defend your license investigation and disciplinary proceedings, and for appeals of adverse action.

Vermont Nursing Board Authority

Vermont nurse licensing officials have legal authority to investigate nurses with suspect Florida nursing school credentials. Vermont's nursing laws establish the Vermont Board of Nursing to set educational requirements and other standards to protect the public against unqualified nurses. Section 1571 of those laws requires nurses wishing to practice in Vermont to obtain a Board of Nursing license. Section 1582 expressly authorizes the Board of Nursing to revoke the license of any nurse "making or causing to be made a false, fraudulent, or forged statement or representation in procuring or attempting to procure registration or renew a license."

Expect Employer Investigations of Vermont Nurses

Nurses with suspect Florida nursing school credentials should expect Vermont hospitals, clinics, home health services, and other healthcare employers to pursue their own credentials investigations. Those employers will, of course, terminate the employment of any nurse whose credentials the Vermont Board of Nursing revokes. But healthcare employers nationwide have been referring nurses with suspect credentials for board investigation and requiring those nurses to prove their suspect credentials' authenticity or face job termination.

Skilled License Defense for Vermont Nurses

Don't face Vermont state board or employer license investigation without the skilled and experienced representation you need. The Lento Law Firm's premier Professional License Defense Team and national license defense attorney Joseph D. Lento are available in Vermont for your professional licensing issues. Call 888.535.3686 or go online now.


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