FAQ

Can I contact PNAP without the Board of Nursing being notified?

ABSOLUTELY! All calls are handled with caring and confidentiality.  Our goal is to assist professionals who need help with a drug or alcohol problem or a mental illness BEFORE his/her practice is affected.  We encourage nurses and nursing students to call PNAP for help BEFORE they have a complaint filed with the Board and BEFORE they need an attorney because they have criminal charges.

What makes me eligible for enrollment in the PNAP monitoring program?

You are eligible for enrollment in our program if you are a nurse or a nursing student who has been diagnosed with a substance use disorder or a psychological and/or mental health disorder such as bi-polar disorder, psychosis, and schizophrenia.  Enrollment requires entrance into a contract with PNAP as an agreement to comply with the terms and conditions or our monitoring.  You voluntarily sign a contract with PNAP as a commitment to your recovery.

What will it cost me to contact PNAP?

Nothing.  We conduct a FREE phone needs assessment and provide referrals to licensed treatment providers who specialize in evaluating and treating health care professionals.  You will pay no fees to PNAP unless or until you enroll in our program.

What are the key components of monitoring by PNAP and what are the costs once enrolled?

Random Drug Screening: average cost $32 – $50 per screen plus collection fee charged by the collection site.

Treatment:  Evaluation – average cost free to $125

In-Patient Detoxification, In-patient Rehabilitation, Partial program, Intensive Out-patient Program, Individual Therapy and Group Therapy are typically covered by your Insurance or Medical Assistance. You will be told up front what if any costs you will be required to pay. We also assist with obtaining County funding for those uninsured.

Twelve Step Meeting Attendance – FREE

Specialty Nurse Meetings – FREE

How long will I be monitored?

Our program is a three year monitoring program that provides support and documented evidence of your recovery.

I was suspected of taking drugs from my employer — what should I do?

Contact PNAP immediately for assistance so that we can gather information and guide you through the referral and reporting process.

My employer said they have to report me to the Attorney General’s Office, the DEA, and the local police — what will happen?

Employers have a legal requirement to notify these agencies.  You may be contacted by any of these agencies.  Contact PNAP and we can assist you in finding legal representation.  Attorneys should to be experience with both criminal law and administrative law when dealing with the Board of Nursing.  It is important they understand the effect a criminal plea may have on your license.

My employer said they are reporting me to the Board of Nursing — what will happen?

A complaint to the Board of Nursing will be referred to the PHMP (Professional Health Monitoring Program), whose role it is to determine the likelihood of of your practice being a danger to the public.    That determination will be based largely in part on the results of an drug and alcohol and/or a mental health evaluation by an approved provider.  You may receive a letter from the PHMP requesting you contact PNAP.  However, PNAP is available to nurses and nursing at any time, and we encourage you to contact us before you receive the letter.

What is the PHMP?

The PHMP (Professional Health Monitoring Program) is a Pennsylvania government agency that works in conjunction with the Pennsylvania Licensing Boards.  Their primary focus is to protect the health and safety of the public from healthcare providers who they believe may be at risk of being impaired.  They will determine eligibility for a alternative to discipline monitoring program.  They also responsible for any disciplinary monitoring agreements issued by the Board of Nursing.

What should I do if I get a letter from the PHMP?

If you receive a letter from the PHMP, please contact PNAP as it instructs you to do.  Our role is to help you address the letter, refer you for an evaluation if necessary, and clear up any misconceptions you may have about what is being asked of you.  We will also explain the entire process and any consequences of your failure to respond.  Please, we advise you not to ignore this letter as it could result in public and permanent discipline on your license.  

What are the requirements for application for or renewal of a Nursing license in Pennsylvania?

The next renewal deadline for Pennsylvania Nurses with RN licenses is April 30, 2016. Pennsylvania RNs must complete all 30 hours of CE before the end of the renewal period. Any CE hours completed outside of the biennial renewal period may not be used towards the required 30 hours.

CE Requirements for RNs:

Pennsylvania RNs must complete 30 hours of Board approved CE during biennial renewal periods. The Board assigns registered nurses to one of the following license expiration dates:

  • April 30 in the even-numbered years
  • October 31 in the even-numbered years
  • April 30 in the odd-numbered years
  • October 31 in the odd-numbered years

Effective January 1, 2015, all persons applying for issuance of an initial license shall be required to complete 3 hours of DPW-approved training in child abuse recognition and reporting requirements as a condition of licensure.

Additionally, effective with the first license renewal after January 1, 2015, all health-related licensees and funeral directors applying for the renewal of a license issued by the Board shall be required to complete at least 2 hours of DPW-approved continuing education in child abuse recognition and reporting requirements as a condition of renewal.

CE Requirements for LPNs:  No CE Required.

Link:  Child Abuse Reporting CE on Nurse.com

Link:  Free  Child Abuse Reporting CE at The University of Pittsburgh

What are the rules for the reporting crimes and disciplinary action?  

Effective October 17, 2015, RNs, LPNs, CRNPs, LDNs, and CNSs MUST notify the State Board of Nursing of the following:  Pending criminal charges and criminal convictions MUST be reported within 30 days of the action. Discipline taken against a license in other states/jurisdictions MUST be reported within 90 days. Notification should be made online

• Pending criminal charges
• Criminal convictions (including a guilty plea, conviction following a trial, probation without verdict and Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition)
• Disciplinary actions taken by other states/jurisdictions

Pending criminal charges and criminal convictions MUST be reported within 30 days of the action.

Discipline taken against a license in other states/jurisdictions MUST be reported within 90 days.

Notification should be made online at: https://www.mylicense.state.pa.us/BPOAFormBuilder/Login_licensee.aspx.

As part of that notification, licensees will be able to upload relevant documents. Licensees who do not have internet access shall mail the notification and supporting documentation to the Board office. Failure to make a timely report may result in the imposition of a disciplinary sanction.