Where to Turn...

  1. Hello, just joined this board today, on behalf of my daughter, who has her CNA license and is in school for her RN degreen. She has worked 2 1/2 years in a residential home for mentally and physically handicapped adults, recently being given the promotion to supervisor. Recently she has been accused of *pinching* a resident, and has led to a full investigation. No other issues in her history. She had a meeting with the director of nursing today to discuss the events, but has been threatened by the personel director, saying she does not feel a mentally handicapped person would lie about something of this sort, but yet he is in several programs for behaviour, including non truths. My daughter is a very dedicated worker, and truly adores the residents, has brought many of them home with her for holidays, and was raised with 2 handicapped cousins, so shes aware of the problems they face daily in comparsion to non handicapped. A coworker witnessed the whole ordeal, and there was NO pinching or possible way it could of happened, and she has stated that in her statement. My question, if there is NO credible evidence that she actually did this, will it still be enough for termination? What actions should she be taking? We are located in IL and I've yet to find any guidelines for her to follow. A mark like this on her record could deter her education in the field of nursing, and its a shame, for she is an excellent student, and a dedicated caregiver that the nursing field definitely needs more of. Any help, suggestions ,links would be greatly appreciated! Thank you
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  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   sunnygirl272
    If she is already in school, this won't effect her application, so that is good.
    A CNA is certified, not licensed. When she sits applies for her nursing license, I don't think this (non)incident should effect her.
    Is the worker who witnessed the incident willing to speak on her behalf? Also, perhaps a signed writted(perhaps notarized) account from the other worker, for your daughter's records?
    Is your daughter's facility unionized? If so, she needs to talk to her steward STAT!
    If nonunionized, I don't know if they have enough to terminate her....if she is terminated, doesn't sound like that'd be such a bad thing, truthfully. To her, it doubtless seems like the end of the world. But I personally would not want to be at a place so hellbent on getting rid of me. Does she have copies of all of her employee evals? (EVERYONE SHOULD KEEP A COPY OF THEIR EVALS!!! NEVER KNOW WHEN YOU"RE GONNA NEED THEM!!)Best of luck! hope we get to meet you daughter soon!
  4. by   leeca
    My uncle is handicapped and both mentally and physically and he has been known to lie or exaggerate.

    It sounds to me that the person who said handicapped people don't lie, just wants to get your daughter the sack.

    But it sounds like they don't have enough evidence.

    l work in aged care and the patients are always complaining about the nurses, but we don't take much notice unless we find evidence that it may have occured, such as a bruise or red mark etc.

    Don't let it get her down, find somewhere else that appreciates her.
  5. by   Nanette
    HI
    She needs to protect herself, I know of CNAs in IL who have lost their certification because of 'complaints' of patient abuse. If she wants to continue to work as a CNA while going to school, she better keep on top of this complaint, if the residence reports it to the state, she should contact the state, there are hearings and petitions to maintain certification.
  6. by   Nurse Ratched
    First, in most non-unionized workplaces, a person can be fired for almost any reason or no reason at all, except for reasons that violate your civil rights.

    Second (and I preface this by saying I am not suggesting your daughter is guilty of this), abuse of a person entrusted in another's care is a VERY serious charge, and the facility would be negligent in its care to not investigate such a charge.

    Third, yes, people lie, exaggerate and misinterpret - both mentally well people and those less so.

    Your daughter has a witness - her coworker - so it's less problematic than simply a he-said/she-said thing - there are two people disputing the account of one. Seems to go in her favor. That said, if the person who is accusing her insists on pushing it (or is getting secondary gain from the whole issue) then she could lose her job over it. It is a rare instance when a facility pushes a case in even the most egregious case of abuse as they don't want their name associated with such things. So worst case scenario she could be pushed to quit or fired over it, but the chances of anything going against her certification are pretty small.

    When I applied to test for NCLEX, there was a line that inquired about previous health care certifications and licenses, and whether any had ever been revoked or had action taken against them.

    Good luck to her, and I hope this sorts out quickly.
  7. by   giggly1977
    I can understand this situation. I was in my second year of nursing school and also worked with mentally challenged adults, most with mental illnesses who loved to make stories up when they didn't get their way. Let me tell you. I was 20 years old (now 26) and had a client who was 24 who decided he had a crush on me. When I told him the boundaries and explained to him that I was there to help him, not to be his girlfriend, he flipped his lid. He called his case worker with the dept of mental health and I was placed in a full fledged investigation, because he told her we had sex. Anyways, I was devastated. I was scared it would affect my nursing career forever. His case worker was extremely understanding and she knew it was a lie, but they still had to treat it like it had actually happened. I was investigated by the dept of mental health and also the city police dept. I told them the truth and my superviser who was also a very close friend of mine wrote me a great recommendation about the type of job that I did with my clients and what a great nurse I would make someday. Anyways, the investigation was scary and last about 1 1/2 months. In the end everything was dropped, I had no record. Just keep your heads up high and don't let this issue bring your daughter down. If there was a witness who wrote a letter, they have no ground to stand on with an investigation. This is just protocol. Good Luck and keep us posted.
  8. by   traumaRUs
    I also am from central IL and I would want it investigated, but when she is cleared, I would also want an official statement (and I receive a copy too) placed in my personnel file. Good luck. If she needs a job and lives near Peoria, IL have her email me. Good luck..judi
  9. by   sjoe
    Yet another good argument for a strong CNA union.

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