How a First DUI Can Affect Your Nursing License
Fortunately, a first-time conviction for DUI would likely not result in losing a nursing license in Virginia. However, the nursing board in our state can take action against a nurse if they find the nurse has used alcohol or drugs to the extent that it makes it unsafe for them to practice as a nurse. Disciplinary measures they could take include:
- Refuse to admit an applicant to an examination
- Refuse to issue a nurse a license, certificate, or registration
- Suspend a nurse’s license, certificate, registration, or licensure privilege for a set period of time
- Revoke a nurse’s license, certificate, registration, or licensure
- Censure a nurse
- Reprimand a nurse
- Place a nurse on probation for a specified period of time
A reprimand would be more likely in these situations, even if this were a first DUI conviction:
- They were using a patient’s medications and were arrested for driving while impaired by using drugs.
- They were arrested for DUI while driving to work.
- They did not disclose a prior DUI on their nursing license application.
How Subsequent DUI Convictions Can Affect a Nursing License
If a nurse is convicted of two or more DUIs for alcohol or drug impairments, this could show a pattern of substance abuse. It may result in the nursing board taking disciplinary actions or revoking their nursing license. Actions that would demonstrate a substance abuse problem and jeopardize their license may include:
- Smelling of alcohol or drugs at work.
- Drinking or using drugs while working or on a break.
- Charged with a drug possession crime.
- Charged with public intoxication.
- Have multiple absences due to their alcohol or drug abuse.
Are you a nurse or other healthcare provider facing DUI charges? Our experienced DUI attorneys are here to explain how your charges could affect your license. Order our free book, The Virginia DUI/DWI Survival Guide, and call our Manassas office at 888-DUI-LWYR or fill out our convenient online form to schedule your free initial consultation today.