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New York nurse has license suspended for drug violation

We have made the point more than once in this space: New York State has tough requirements for those who want to be licensed as a nurse here.

One of the requirements is vague and can be understood in more than one way: you must “be of good moral character.” A licensed practical nurse who apparently sold crack cocaine recently had her nursing license suspended for professional misconduct, a news outlet reported.

The Syracuse LPN was in 2015 convicted in Onondaga County Court of felony criminal sale of a controlled substance in the third degree. As part of a plea agreement, she acknowledged that she sold crack cocaine to a police informant in early 2015. She was sentenced to 5 years of probation, the Post-Standard reported.

Her nursing license has been suspended for a minimum of three months. According to the news report, she can apply to have the license reinstated after submitting a doctor’s report that states that she is fit to practice. At that point, she would be placed on probation for 2 years.

The state’s Office of Professions says on its website that criminal convictions do not necessarily prevent nurses from obtaining licenses in New York.

“NYSED (New York State Education Department) decides on a case by case basis whether your prior criminal conviction(s) will disqualify you from being licensed as a nurse in New York,” it states.

The nurse who has had her license suspended has the opportunity to get a second chance. With the help of an experienced health care attorney, she can request license reinstatement and resumption of her career.