It’s best to seek the help of a nurse attorney when facing different complaints and allegations about not following policy and procedure of documenting wastage of medication. However, there are nurses that tend to face the results instead without thinking that a nurse attorney is always reliable for matters such as these.
At the time of the initial incident, the RN was employed as a Registered Nurse at a hospital in The Woodlands, Texas, and had been in that position for six (6) years.
The incident that happened on or about August 6, 2017, through September 11, 2017, involves an RN. The RN withdrew Hydromorphone from the medication dispensing system for patients but failed to document and/or completely and accurately document the administration of the medications in the patient’s Medication Administration Records and/or nurses’ notes. The RN’s conduct was likely to injure the patients, in that subsequent caregivers would rely on her documentation to further medicate the patients which could result in an overdose. Additionally, the RN’s conduct placed the hospital in violation of Chapter 481 (Controlled Substances Act) of the Texas Health and Safety Code.
And on or about August 6, 2017, through September 11, 2017, the RN withdrew Hydromorphone from the medication dispensing system for patients but failed to follow the facility’s policy and procedures for wastage of the unused portions of the medications. The RN’s conduct left medications unaccounted for, was likely to deceive the hospital pharmacy, and placed the pharmacy in violation of Chapter 481 (Controlled Substances Act) of the Texas Health and Safety Code.
Then on or about August 6, 2017, through September 11, 2017, the RN misappropriated Hydromorphone belonging to the facility or patients thereof or failed to take precautions to prevent such misappropriation. Additionally, when being escorted back to her unit for her belongings, medications were found in the RN’s jacket including four (4) empty carpujets of Hydromorphone, one (1) empty ampule of Hydromorphone, and two (2) partially filled vials of Morphine. The RN’s conduct was likely to defraud the facility and patients of the cost of the medications.
On or about October 31, 2019, the RN misappropriated Morphine, belonging to the facility and patients thereof, for her own personal use. Subsequently, when Respondent was questioned by management, she pulled out a 30cc pill cup with a small amount of blue liquid residue inside of it. Additionally, the RN admitted to her TPAPN Case manager that she diverted narcotics for personal use. The RN’s conduct was likely to defraud the facility and patients of the cost of the medications.
On or about October 31, 2019, the RN was engaged in the intemperate use of THC and Morphine in that she submitted a specimen for a reasonable suspicion drug screen, which resulted in a positive for THC and Morphine. The use of Morphine and THC by a Registered Nurse, while subject to call or duty, could impair the nurse’s ability to recognize subtle signs, symptoms, or changes in a patient’s condition, and could impair the nurse’s ability to make rational, accurate, and appropriate assessments, judgments, and decisions regarding patient care, thereby placing a patient in potential danger.
In response, the RN acknowledges that she had the items listed in her pocket on September 11, 2017. The RN states the manager would not allow her to return to the unit to document in her patient charts. The RN states nurses at a Medical Center regularly pulled medications early to accommodate the chaotic and busy environment of the hospital and to provide pain relief to patients in a timely and effective manner. The RN states nurses would place the medications in their pockets and have them available for their patients. And the RN also states she would double-check to make sure she documented each patient’s medications and placed empty vials in the appropriate waste container at the end of each shift. The RN states that she called and self-reported the use of Morphine and cannabis to her TPAPN Case Manager. The RN states that she now realizes that she should have called her counselor sooner. The RN states she was under a lot of stress and should have asked for help sooner. The RN states she is holding herself accountable for her actions. The RN states it is with deep regret that this has occurred. She also states this was her first time to be working a night shift. The RN states sleep deprivation was setting in. And that on or about October 31, 2019, she arrived for work (shift 22:00-06:00) and was asked to complete a drug screen. The RN states the narcotic count was short by approximately 1-2cc of Morphine.
As a result, the RN will receive a disciplinary sanction from the Texas Board of Nursing (BON). Upon the investigation, the evidence received was sufficient and enough to put the RN into discipline. This will badly affect his nursing license if the RN will not act fast to defend himself from the case filed against him. Hiring a nurse attorney is the best option for the RN to help him solve his case.
Always remember that a nurse attorney is fully equipped with what is needed to be done to help an RN like you during such a case. Never hesitate to seek help and if you have questions about the Texas Board of Nursing disciplinary process? Contact The Law Office of Nurse Attorney Yong J. An for a confidential consultation by calling or texting 24/7 at (832) 428-5679 and ask for attorney Yong.