Thursday, June 14, 2007

Formal Complaint Filed Against Legal Counsel for the Wisconsin Board of Nursing

Formal complaints of this nature are handled through the Governor's office. They should receive my letter tomorrow, and I should hear back from them within two weeks.
Thursday June 14, 2007

Governor Jim Doyle
c/o Nick Coenen, Constituent Services
P.O. Box 7863
Madison, WI 53707

Dear Governor Doyle:

With this letter I would like to file a formal complaint against Colleen Baird, legal counsel for the Wisconsin Board of Nursing.

In her capacity as legal counsel for the Wisconsin Board of Nursing, Ms. Baird has advised the Board to issue RN licenses to individuals who do not meet the legal criteria for licensure set forth in Wisconsin Nurse Practice Act. Specifically, she has counseled them to license as registered nurses students who have completed the first 15 months of Marquette University’s Direct Entry nursing program. Students in this program do not graduate at that time, and thus are not eligible for licensure. The Wisconsin Nurse Practice Act 441.04 clearly requires graduation from a school of nursing in order to become licensed as an RN in Wisconsin. Neither Ms. Baird, nor the Wisconsin Board of Nursing hold the authority to override the law in this matter, and yet this is exactly what they are doing.

On April 19, 2007 I sent a letter to each member of the Wisconsin Board of Nursing, cc’d to Colleen Baird, asking them to reevaluate the Board’s "Special Agreement" with Marquette University under which the Board has been illegally issuing RN licenses to Direct Entry students who have not graduated from a school of nursing (enclosed). I was never notified that my correspondence with the Board would be discussed at the Wisconsin Board of Nursing meeting on May 17, 2007, and so I was not able to attend the meeting myself or present my case more fully directly to the Board. After the board meeting I was not notified that my correspondence had been discussed or what, if any, decisions had been made by the Board.

Not only has Ms. Baird been advising the Wisconsin Board of Nursing to continue with a policy that directly violates Wisconsin State Law, but she has prevented me from presenting my case directly to the Board itself. My participation was precluded because I was not notified beforehand about the board meeting that discussed my correspondence, nor was I notified about the Board’s decision after the meeting. I demand to have the opportunity to present my case directly to the Board.


Lydia Bertrand