Administrative Hearing Commission

Editor:
Richard Maseles, Esquire

Commission denied a probated registered nurse license to applicant, even though Board of Nursing granted her a probated license, because she lacked good moral character. Brown v. Missouri State Bd. of Nursing, No. 13-0182 BN (Mo. A.H.C., Aug. 27, 2013), Barragan-Scott, C.

Brown had a 20-year alcohol problem and admitted her addiction. She received SIS convictions in 2007 and 2009 for DWI. She completed residential treatment for alcoholism in 2010. She stayed sober since then but her score on a screening test indicated probable drug or alcohol addiction. She also made several misstatements on her application papers. The board decided to give her a license with five years’ probation, which she appealed to the commission. The board defended its decision on the basis of the misrepresentations and her lack of good character.

Decision
: The commission denied Brown a license due to her lack of good character. The commission did not find misrepresentation as a ground for denial of licensure, because she gave the answers in question on advice of counsel. But while she had abstained from alcohol since her treatment, her descriptions of the DWI incidents indicated a lack of rehabilitation, and the DWI incidents themselves were fairly recent. The commission finally held that, even though the board argued in favor of a probated license in lieu of denial, the board itself had asserted and proved Brown’s lack of good character. That finding did not foreclose Brown’s opportunity to show good character in the future by showing her rehabilitation.