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Star Tribune Investigation Exposes Minnesota Nursing Board’s Unacceptable Oversight

A significant investigative report published on the front page of today’s Minneapolis Star Tribune reveals that the Board condones misconduct that would end nursing careers in the nation’s other states.

Records analyzed by the Star Tribune included more than 1,000 disciplinary actions by the Nursing Board over the past four years.  The Star Tribune’s investigation of disciplinary action by the Nursing Board found:

  • The board actively licenses more than 230 nurses since 2010 who have records of unsafe practice, including botched care that led to patient harm or even death.
  • Ninety-three nurses are allowed to practice despite having been charged or convicted of crimes such as physical or sexual assault and drug thefts — some against their own patients.
  • The board gives nurses who admit misconduct second, third and sometimes more chances to keep practicing.
  • Getting fired for incompetence, even multiple times, rarely means Minnesota nurses lose their licenses.
  • Minnesota is one of only 10 states where the board has no restrictions on granting licenses to felons, according to a 2012 survey of state nursing boards.

The Star Tribune investigation reveals that Minnesota laws regarding nursing practice are some of the loosest in the country when compared to the national standards for nursing home disciplinary action.

In response to the Star Tribune’s findings, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton stated, “It would appear the board is more interested in protecting bad nurses than the public…Where does it come from that their job is to give subpar nurses chance after chance after chance?” Dayton promised to “do whatever is necessary” to change the atmosphere of nursing in Minnesota.

Several of the persons featured in the Star Tribune article included families who lost vulnerable loved ones due to substandard nursing care in nursing homes. The Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm represents clients in cases involving catastrophic injury caused by nursing homes and other care facilities that fail to provide proper care. If you believe your loved one has been harmed due neglect or abuse in a nursing home, take action and contact the Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm online or call us toll-free at (877) 552-2873 to set up a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.