Welcome to the
New Hampshire Board of Nursing
A Guide for Students and Other Visitors
We are pleased that you have decided to attend this meeting of the Board and
hope that what you learn will help you as you progress in your career.
This brief guide is intended to help you interpret the discussions that you will
hear during the meeting so that you can further your understanding of how the
Board of Nursing regulates the practice of nursing in the state.
Please silence all cell phones and pagers during the meeting.
Some general information……
Members of the Board of Nursing as well some members of the Board staff
attend the meeting. The Board members are vested by law with the
responsibility to regulate nursing practice in the state of New Hampshire. The
Board staff members are employed by the state in order to carry out the
charges of the Board. The Board members are the only people present at the
meeting who may offer opinions on issues and participate in a vote.
As you listen to the discussions, keep in mind that the purpose of the Board is
……….Safeguard life, health, and the public welfare of the people
of this state and ….. to protect the people of the state of New
Hampshire from the unauthorized, unqualified, and improper
application of services by individuals in the practice of
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There are 11 members of the Board of Nursing: 5 RNs one of which must be
an APRN, 2 LPNs, 2 LNAs, and 2 public members. The Board members are
appointed by the Governor to serve a 3-year term. Each member may serve a
total of 3 consecutive 3-year terms, or a total of 9 consecutive years.
The Board members who will be present at the meeting include:
Robert Duhaime, RN, Board Chair
Karen Baranowski, DSNc, RN , Vice Chair
Kathleen Kidder, APRN
Kathleen Hartman, RN
Nora Fortin, RN
Sharon Dyer, LPN
Beth Fersch, LPN
Cynthia Smith, LNA
Brenda Libby, LNA
Harley Featherston, Public Member
James Kuras, Public Member
The Board staff who will be present at the meeting include:
Margaret Walker, Ed.D., RN, Interim Executive Director
Laurel O’Connor, JD, Discipline Counsel
Lori Tetreault, RN, Project Specialist IV
Susan Goodness, Administrative Supervisor
Kathryn Dickson, Executive Secretary
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Some Information about Rules and Laws…….
There are 2 types of documents that govern nursing practice: the law, also
known as the Nurse Practice Act, and the Administrative Rules, also known as
Nur 100 - 800.
The law that governs nursing practice is referred to by many names.
Commonly, it is known as the Nurse Practice Act. In the legislative listing of
laws in the state, it is called RSA 326-B. It is also referred to as the statute or
just the law. Any changes in the Nurse Practice Act must be voted on by the
NH legislature and signed by the Governor.
In the first part of 2005, legislation was introduced to revise the Nurse Practice
Act. This legislation was passed by both the NH Senate and House, and was
signed into law by Governor Lynch in July 2005. Some of the practice
changes incorporated in the new Nurse Practice Act include changes in
education requirements for APRNs, changes in responsibilities of all licensees
in regard to requirements to warn about potential for violent acts, and allowing
New Hampshire to become a “compact state.” When NH implemented
compact licensure on January 1, 2006, it became possible for RNs and LPNs
who live in NH to work in other compact states without having to obtain a
license in that state. Likewise, nurses who live in other compact states may
work in NH without having to obtain a NH license. Check the Board of
Nursing web site for specific information about how this change has impacted
The Administrative Rules are more detailed than the law and describe
specifically how the law is implemented. You may have seen the rules referred
to in terms of Nur 100 - 800 or Chapter 100 - 800. Each chapter describes a
specific part of how the Board functions and how nursing practice is regulated.
Chapter 100: General overview of the Board organization
Chapter 200: General Board procedures
Chapter 300: Licensing requirements (LPN, RN, APRN)
Chapter 400: Continuing competence requirements, delegation
Chapter 500: Ethical standards
Chapter 600: Education programs (RN, LPN, refresher courses,
LPN IV therapy, nurse externs)
Chapter 700: Nursing assistant licensure, courses, and legislation
Chapter 800: Medication nursing assistants
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Nurse Practice Act, Administrative Rules
RSA 326-B Chapters 100 - 800 or Nur
100 - 800
Statute Describe how to
implement the law
Law Approved by a legislative
Requires a vote by
the NH legislature
Always remember: YOU are responsible for knowing and following the laws
and rules that govern NH Nursing practice.
Copies of the Law and Rules are available on the web site, www.nh.gov/nursing
or by contacting the Board of Nursing office.
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General Information about the Meeting Agenda……
The agenda of each meeting is posted on the Board of Nursing web site prior
to the meeting (www.nh.gov/nursing). Board packets are mailed to all board
members several days before the meeting. Please contact the board office if you
have not received the board materials.
The agenda of the meeting follows a general pattern…..
CALL TO MEETING
1.0 Open Forum
There is always a brief period at the opening of the meeting for "Open
Anyone is invited to address the Board with concerns. The Board will listen to
each individual's comments, but will not provide an answer or response. The
Board may discuss the topics brought to the open forum later in the meeting.
2.0 Approval of the Minutes
3.0 Report of the Chair/ Members
Members of the Board may share things pertinent to nursing practice - articles
in the media, current events, etc.
4.0 Report of the Executive Director/ Staff
The Executive Director will provide information about the number of licenses
issued, the budget, and a variety of other activities that have taken place in the
Board office during the preceding month.
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5.0 Attorney General
Since the Board of Nursing acts similar to a court dealing with discipline issues
of licensees, occasionally there is communication received from the Attorney
General's office about legal concerns.
6.0 Report of Investigator/Prosecutor
The Investigator/Prosecutor for the Board, Attorney Laurel O’Connor reviews
the number of cases still unresolved.
7.0 Adjudication (Investigator/ Prosecutor)
There are several ways disciplinary issues are settled: hearings, settlement
agreement, and voluntary surrender.
Hearings are held if the plaintiff has been unable to reach a prior agreement
with the investigator/ prosecutor. The plaintiff may hire a lawyer to represent
her/him. The proceedings will follow a specific order and will be recorded. At
the close of the testimony and questioning period, the audience may be asked
to leave the room while the Board deliberates and comes to a final conclusion.
Settlement agreements may be presented to the Board if the plaintiff has agreed
that the complaint brought against her/him was valid and agrees to specified
Voluntary surrender of license occurs once in a while when a licensee
recognizes that as the best strategy for her/himself.
Adjudicative sessions are conducted as public sessions with the exception of
final deliberations. Keep in mind that you will be hearing testimony from or
about a licensee whose license is under board consideration for discipline, and
that you may hear testimony that is unsettling or difficult. The Board members
are entrusted by law to be fair and just in all situations while being true to the
mission to protect the public.
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8.0 Adjudicative (Executive Director)
These adjudicatory activities include petitions for reinstatement of practice
privileges and petitions to remove conditions and restrictions. The licensee
may appear before the Board to present reasons that the Board should consider
when deliberating on the outcome of the petition.
Questions about licensing individuals with unusual circumstances are presented
to the board for deliberation.
All the education programs that require board approval are reviewed
periodically and the results of the review presented to the board. Education
programs that require Board review and approval include:
Programs preparing RNs, LPNs, LNAs, and MNAs (Medication
LPN IV Therapy Programs; and
RN and LPN Refresher Programs
Go to http://www.nh.gov/nursing/education/index.html for the listing of
approved educational programs.
Board staff members make recommendations to the Board members and the
Board members make the final determination through a vote.
11.0 Practice Inquiries and Practice Committee Reports
There are two standing committees that report to the board with their
recommendations: the Practice & Education Committee (P & E), and the
APRN Liaison Committee. Both committees meet monthly to deliberate on
issues that have been referred to them by the Board.
The Practice & Education Committee deals with issues of scope of practice
for licensees in all categories. The Board reviews recommendations from the
P & E Committee, and renders an official opinion. Board opinions are posted
on the Board of Nursing web site (www.state.nh.us under Clinical Practice
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Advisories) following the meeting, and are published in the Board of Nursing
Newsletter which is published on the web site quarterly. Licensees are
responsible for practicing in accordance with all advisories issued by the Board.
The APRN Liaison Committee discusses issues pertinent to APRN practice
and recommends new APRN applicants for licensure.
12.0 Committee Reports and Recommendations
In addition to the APRN Liaison and the Practice & Education Committees,
the board hears reports from other committees, including the Day of
Discussion planning group, the ADA committee that reviews requests from
license applicants for accommodations when taking the NCLEX, and other ad
hoc committees assigned by the board to provide research and
recommendations for decision-making.
Bills that affect nursing practice are discussed and debated by the Board.
14.0 National Council of State Boards of Nursing
The National Council of State Boards of Nursing is the coalition of all the
states and territories that use the NCLEX as the licensing examination for RNs
and LPNs. Any changes in how the National Council operates are discussed by
the Board. Board members are asked to review the NCSBN website at
https://www.ncsbn.org/index.htm for information on nursing and related
issues affecting the board.
15.0 Old Business
16.0 Correspondence/ Articles/ FYIs with Board Staff Discussion
Information pertinent to nursing practice is discussed.
The Board meeting may adjourn as early as 3PM or it may last until 7PM
depending on the amount of business that must be completed.
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Thank you for attending the Board meeting!
Please check the web site at www.nh.gov/nursing. The board office also
provides an email address for all questions from licensees at
or by calling the Board office at 271-2323.
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