CHA News Article

State Auditor Finds Problems, Delays in BRN Complaint Resolution Program

A new report from the California State Auditor finds significant problems with the enforcement program administered by the Board of Registered Nursing (BRN). The audit, which was required by Business and Professions Code section 2718, reviewed 40 investigated complaints resolved between Jan. 1, 2013, and June 30, 2016, and found that BRN failed to resolve 31 of the complaints within the 18-month goal; 15 of those complaints took longer than 36 months to resolve. Seven of those 15 complaints took longer than 48 months to resolve, and six complaints included allegations of patient harm resulting from a nurse’s actions. As of July 2016, BRN has a backlog of more than 180 complaints that have not yet been assigned to one of its investigators. The auditor also noted that BRN lacks accurate data to assess the timeliness of its dispute resolution process; lacks controls to ensure BRN staff enter information accurately; improperly assigned high priority complaints to internal investigations, rather than the Consumer Affairs Division of Investigation; and lacks a formal training program for its enforcement staff.