Board Membership & Responsibilities
How can one become a board member?
You can be appointed to a Professional Board by having your name submitted by an organization, by submitting it yourself, or by someone else nominating you. The Licensure Unit receives the nominations, forwards an application for appointment to you, and submits the applications to the Professional Boards Committee of the Board of Health. This Committee reviews the applications, interviews any applicant who appears, and recommends appointments to the full Board of Health which has final selection and appointment authority. This process applies to professional and consumer members alike.
What’s the difference between a professional and a consumer member?
All professional members must meet specific criteria such as being in active practice under a license for a period of five years. Also some boards, e.g., Medicine and Surgery, require that a licensee hold a specific position such as medical school faculty membership. Consumer members must be able to represent the consumer’s perspective. Both professional and consumer members have equal voting rights on Board issues and both can hold offices on the Board. Boards that administer practical examinations expect professional members to serve as examiners.
What does a board do?
The purpose of a Professional Board is to provide for the health, safety, and welfare of the citizens of Nebraska by insuring that licensees, certificate holders, and registrants are meeting minimum standards of proficiency and competency, as well as to control their profession in the interest of consumer protection. Board members' duties include, but are not limited to, administration of licensing examination, recommending the issuance or denial of licenses; changes in legislation and regulations; complaint screening and making recommendations on disciplinary actions. A board member is expected to attend all board meetings, participate on any sub-committee to which appointed, and be prepared for and provide input during meetings.
What about confidentiality and conflict of interest?
Board members are expected to make difficult decisions and to do so without bias. However, when situations arise that pose a conflict, board members are precluded by statute and regulations from participating in decision making. Board members serve as officials of the State of Nebraska with all the dignity and liability that goes with this responsibility. While board members are statutorily not liable for certain functions, it must be stressed that privileged information received by them must be kept strictly confidential.
Board members must distinguish their board member roles from that of other roles to ensure that their actions facilitate public health and safety.
The majority of board members are reimbursed ranging from $20 to $50 per diem (day) plus expenses (mileage, lodging, meals) for each day spent conducting board business. Some boards and commissions receive only expense reimbursements. Being a board member entails a commitment of personal time and, in some instances, funds.
If being a board member piques your interest, contact the Licensure Unit in Lincoln, Nebraska, (402) 471-6515 and request an application for board appointment; or for further information ask to speak with the individual who works with the profession in which you are interested.
Boards and subcommittees
The following professions have Boards and Subcommittees that work with the Unit:
- Advanced Practice Registered Nurses
- Alcohol and Drug Counseling
- Athletic Training
- Audiology & Speech-Language Pathology
- Cosmetology, Electrology, Esthetics, Nail Technology, & Body Art
- Dentistry & Dental Hygiene
- Emergency Medical Services
- Environmental Health Specialists
- Funeral Directing & Embalming
- Hearing Instrument Specialists
- Massage Therapy
- Medical Nutrition Therapy
- Medical Radiography
- Medicine & Surgery
- Mental Health Practice
- Nursing Home Administration
- Occupational Therapy
- Physical Therapy
- Physician Assistants
- Respiratory Care Practice
- Veterinary Medicine & Surgery
DHHS, Division of Public Health
301 Centennial Mall South, 3rd Floor
P.O. Box 94986
Lincoln, NE 68509-4986
Phone: (402) 471-6515
Fax: (402) 471-3577
Rules and Regulations Page