Nurse’s License Suspended for Drug Tampering
Nurses are obligated to take care of sick and injured patients. This means ensuring that they get the medication they need for their specific condition. Without proper medication, a person’s condition can worsen. They may even die.
Some nurses have drug addictions, though, and they handle this by stealing medications from patients. This is a serious issue that can lead to patient harm as well as nursing license suspension and other issues.
A nurse who stole fentanyl from a patient and replaced it with saline has had her license suspended as of October 28. The woman worked at Bronson Methodist Hospital, located in Kalamazoo, Michigan.
Problems with fentanyl surfaced in August. The 2 millimeter vials appeared to be tampered with and not working. A nurse administered the contents of a fentanyl vial and it did not affect the patient at all. Hospital and pharmacy staff investigated and found four vials that appeared to be tampered with. They were unevenly filled and had loose caps.
The vials were found on a dispensing machine. Investigators found data that pointed to the nurse using the dispensing machine more often than other staff. She had more access to the fentanyl vials.
The nurse admitted to taking fentanyl from vials on eight separate occasions starting in mid-July and continuing until mid-August. She would remove the fentanyl and replace it with saline. She would then put the vials back in stock.
On August 27, the nurse was terminated from her job at Bronson Methodist Hospital. She has until late November to submit a response and contest the suspension.
What is Drug Tampering?
The Florida Anti-Tampering Act is defined under Florida Statutes Section 501.001. Under this law, whoever tampers with, or conspires or attempts to tamper with, any drug or other consumer product and places a person in danger of bodily injury or death, is guilty of a first-degree felony.
In this context, bodily injury is defined as any type of injury, including something minor, like a cut, abrasion or bruise. It could be a temporary injury or something more serious, such as a burn, disfigurement, organ damage or physical or mental impairment. Bodily injury could also refer to an illness or any type of physical pain.
In Florida, first-degree felonies are serious criminal matters. A person can face as long as 30 years in prison, as well as a fine of up to $10,000. A felony can also affect other aspects of one’s life, such as employment, housing, voting rights and right to bear arms.
Keep Your License With Help From a Tampa Nursing License Lawyer
Nurses need to act ethically when caring for patients. This means they should not tamper with medications or engaging in other activities that can cause physical or mental harm.
Such actions can lead to license loss, fines and other penalties. Protect yourself with help from Tampa nursing license lawyer David P. Rankin. I have more than 40 years of experience helping licensed professionals protect their livelihood. To schedule a consultation, call (813) 968-6633 or fill out the online form.