Florida Nurse Arrested for Prescription Drug Fraud
Nurses in Florida and throughout the country have a duty to provide medical care to patients while displaying professional conduct. However, many violate the conditions of their nursing license and end up facing punishment such as fines, probation, suspension or even revocation.
Recently, 39 nurses across the state of Florida have had their licenses placed on emergency restriction or suspension for violation of the Florida Nurse Practice Act, such as violating the standard of care, sexual misconduct, committing crimes, student loan default, drug use and drug diversion. One of these cases involved a nurse who was arrested for prescription drug fraud.
On December 1, the 52-year-old woman from Winter Haven was booked into the Polk County Jail where she faces dozens of drug charges, including six counts of illegally using a person’s ID, seven counts of oxycodone trafficking and 33 counts of fraudulently obtaining a controlled substance.
The nurse had worked for Massassa Medical House Calls since December 2016. One of her job duties was to obtain prescriptions from pharmacies and deliver them to patients’ homes. Her license also allowed her to write prescriptions. She took the names of six of her patients and used them to write prescriptions in their names. Between July and October 2017, she wrote 32 prescriptions for oxycodone. She received 28 pills with each prescription, for a total of 896 pills. She kept them all for herself.
Even though she was fired from Massassa Medical House Calls in September 2017, she was still able to keep writing prescriptions for herself using the prescription pad from Massassa. The company became aware of the situation and notified the Polk County Sheriff’s Office. The sheriff’s office interviewed the nurse, who admitted that she had a problem with pain medications.
The nurse’s license is currently suspended under an emergency order that was issued on February 20. However, the final discipline has not been imposed by the Board of Nursing and the criminal charges are still pending. She could have her license permanently suspended or revoked. The board could also place restrictions on her license, place her on probation, impose a fine or punish her in some other way.
The nurse was highly educated and skilled, earning a nursing degree from Polk State College in 2016 and a master’s degree in nursing from Florida Southern College in 2015. She was also certified in gerontology from the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.
Keep Your License with Help From a Tampa Nursing License Lawyer
Nurses have a duty to conduct themselves in a professional manner. However, dealing with a prescription drug addiction can cause people no matter their profession to engage in unethical and illegal activities.
If you are a licensed Florida nurse facing punishment from the state board for whatever, act quickly to remedy the situation. Seek legal help from The Law Offices of David P. Rankin, P.A. I have 30 years of experience representing nurses and other licensed professionals and I can help you achieve a favorable outcome. To schedule a consultation, contact my office at (813) 968-6633.