Nursing is a noble profession and one of the most challenging jobs in the world. It requires immense dedication, hard work, and an unwavering commitment to protecting their patients’ well-being. However, even experienced nurses can find themselves on shaky ground if they fail to follow basic rules or abuse their authority. Unfortunately, not taking the required steps for patient safety can often result in getting fired or sometimes amount up to loosing their nursing license too. In this blog post, we will discuss why nurses get fired and tips you should follow to maintain good standing with your employer.
Table of Contents
Reasons Why Nurses Get Fired From Their Job
1. Causing Harm to Patients
Causing patient harm is the primary cause of nurses getting fired. Negligent behavior, such as failing to investigate a patient’s health condition or not adequately providing necessary care, can lead to severe consequences and even lawsuits. Nursing is a demanding profession, and mistakes can happen. Still, nurses need to take responsibility for their errors and strive to prevent them in the future.
2. Not Renewing License or Certifications
Nurses must regularly renew their NCLEX licensing or other certifications to practice nursing legally. Failing to do so can put patients’ health and safety at risk and result in nurses getting fired from their job. Nurses should stay up-to-date on all NCLEX and other regulations and ensure their licenses or certifications are renewed on time.
3. Violating Workplace Policies
Nurses should follow all their employer’s rules, including patient care, safety protocols, and dress code. Failing to comply with such policies can result in disciplinary action, including termination. Nurses should ensure they are familiar with their employer’s policies and conduct themselves accordingly.
4. HIPAA Violations
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) is a federal law designed to protect patient health information’s privacy. HIPAA violations can result in stiff penalties, including fines and even criminal prosecution in some cases. Nurses should be familiar with HIPAA regulations and take steps to ensure patient privacy is protected at all times.
5. Social Media Misconduct
Posting inappropriate content on social media can be a big problem for nurses. Posts containing offensive language, disrespecting patients or their families, or breaching patient confidentiality can have serious consequences. Nurses should be mindful of what they post on social media and avoid content that could jeopardize their job.
6. Drug Diversion
Drug diversion is the theft or misuse of medication prescribed to patients. This serious offence can have severe legal implications for nurses, including fines and jail time. Nurses should always handle and administer medication with the utmost care, following their employer’s policies and protocols the letter.
7. Breach of Ethics
Nurses are expected to practice their profession ethically and with integrity. Failing to do so can lead to disciplinary action or even termination. Nurses should always strive to uphold the highest ethical standards and be familiar with their professional code of conduct.
8. False Credentials or Work History
Lying about work experience or credentials is considered fraud and can result in nurses getting fired. Nurses should never lie on their resumes or applications, which can lead to severe consequences. When applying for a position, nurses must be honest about their qualifications and background.
9. Too Many Absences or Tardiness
Nurses should do their best to be on time and attend work when scheduled. Repeated absences or tardiness can lead to disciplinary action, including getting fired from their job. Nurses should ensure they arrive on time and notify their supervisors if they need to take a day off.
10. Making too Many Mistakes
Nurses are expected to provide quality care and adhere to safety protocols. Making repeated mistakes can put patients’ health at risk, resulting in them getting fired. Nurses should strive to be accurate and precise in their work and take responsibility for errors.
11. Lack of Professionalism
Nurses should always maintain a professional demeanor, even under challenging situations. Unprofessional behavior, such as verbal abuse, rudeness or disrespect towards patients or co-workers, can result in termination. Nurses should always be courteous and respectful, no matter the circumstance.
12. Inner Politics—improper handling of management
Nurses should strive to maintain good relationships with their employers and co-workers. Gossiping, backstabbing or trying to gain favor by engaging in office politics can be damaging and could lead to getting fired. Nurses should always respect their employers and colleagues, even if they disagree on specific issues.
By understanding why nurses get fired, you can ensure you stay on the right track and maintain good standing with your employer. Following workplace policies, renewing certifications, protecting patient privacy, and adhering to ethical standards are all critical steps nurses should take to prevent their job from jeopardizing.
Mrs. Marie Brown has been a registered nurse for over 25 years. She began her nursing career at a Level I Trauma Center in downtown Chicago, Illinois. There she worked in the Emergency Department and on the Surgical Intensive Care Unit. After several years, she moved to the Midwest and continued her nursing career in a critical care setting. For the last 10 years of her nursing career, Mrs. Brown worked as a flight nurse with an air ambulance service. During this time, she cared for patients throughout the United States.