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Maintaining patient confidentiality and respecting professional boundaries are fundamental ethical obligations for nurses. Unfortunately, there are instances where LVNs may breach these boundaries, leading to potential violations of patient privacy and trust. Such actions can have severe consequences for the LVN’s professional standing and licensure and may necessitate legal intervention. To address these complex legal matters and safeguard the LVN’s rights, a nurse attorney can provide essential legal expertise, guiding the LVN through potential disciplinary proceedings, and advocating for a fair resolution while addressing the allegations in a just and appropriate manner.

At the time of the incident, he was employed as an LVN at a hospital in Victoria, Texas, and had been in that position for one (1) year and three (3) months.

On or about June 1, 2021, while employed as an LVN at a hospital in Victoria, Texas, LVN was accused of the following:

  1. LVN improperly accessed a patient’s medical records for his phone number and for information about his previous visits to the facility. Later, LVN admitted that he accessed the records “out of curiosity.” LVN’s conduct was in violation of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).
  2. LVN violated the professional boundaries of the nurse-client relationship by texting the patient with a personal invitation to meet for coffee or lunch. LVN’s conduct was likely to injure the patient in that it could have resulted in confusion between the needs of the nurse and those of the patient. In addition, LVN’s conduct may have caused delayed distress for the patient, which may not be recognized or felt by the patient until harmful consequences occur.

In response to the above incidents, LVN states that he did send a personal text to the patient but that the patient willingly gave LVN his phone number. LVN states that his access to the patient’s records was related to the patient’s appointment and medical care that day.

The above action constitutes grounds for disciplinary action in accordance with Section 301.452(b)(10)&(13) Texas Occupations Code, and is a violation of 22 TEX ADMIN. CODE §217.11(1)(A),(1)(B),(1)(E)&(1)(J) and 22 TEX. ADMIN. CODE §217.12 (1)(A),(1)(B),(1)(C)&(6)(D).

As a result, the Texas Board of Nursing decided to place his LVN license under disciplinary action. It’s too bad that he failed to hire a nurse attorney for assistance, knowing that he had every reason to defend himself in the first place. His defense would have gotten better if he sought legal consultation from a Texas nurse attorney as well.

So, if you’re facing a complaint from the Board, it’s best to seek legal advice first. Texas Nurse Attorney Yong J. An is willing to assist every nurse in need of immediate help for nurse licensing cases. He is an experienced nurse attorney for various licensing cases for the past 16 years and represented over 300 nurses before the Texas BON. To contact him, please dial (832)-428-5679 for a confidential consultation or for more inquiries.