Nurses in trouble get second chances - Minnesota - page 3

by brian Admin

39,686 Views | 50 Comments

Minnesota State regulators say they protect the public with a closer watch on caregivers accused of misconduct. Those who lost loved ones want them to do more. Elda Bothun lay unconscious on her bed inside a Bloomington... Read More


  1. 7
    As a Minnesota nurse, I found this article very disturbing. Certainly people can and do change and can re-establish themselves as competent caregivers after making mistakes and very bad decisions. A few observations on the articles. There was no one gender, race, or level of nurse portrayed in the article. There were men and woman, various ethnicities, and both LPNs and RNs. There were also nurses from acute care facilities and long term care facilities. So this isn't about any of that. It is about people doing very bad and sometimes illegal things while practicing nursing. I don't think the punishments were severe enough in some cases and at least by what was presented in the article, some of these individuals should have been criminally prosecuted.

    What bothers me the most is the way those of us that are practicing correctly, respectfully, legally, and ethically are included in a group of all nurses in Minnesota.
    mcmgal, noc4senuf, pixie6089, and 4 others like this.
  2. 0
    I have been a LVN for 12 years and when I read this I was shocked all I can say is that those nurses SHOULD have had their license TAKEN away, there is no excuse that I can see, I have worked in long term facilities and psych hospitals. When you have an emergency like that you try everything you can to keep them alive and not just walk away. Have your license is a privilege. I have meet to many nurses in my 13 years that don't care and that makes me sick. I became a nurse to help and take care of people.
  3. 2
    This is a very charged subject. However lets be mindful of what we are posting. While wen courage lively debate we do not allow rudeness or name calling. Thanks...
    sapphire18 and Esme12 like this.
  4. 7
    I read the whole article too. I also watched the video. What disturbs me about this story is that people seem to think that their loved ones are going to live forever. It's not really very clear weather the nurses left the room to do something, like call the family, while paramedics worked on her, or they left knowing she needed assistance from THEM.

    Come on. We aren't miracle workers. We can not make people rise from the dead. This precious lady wasn't 20 and healthy, she was OLD and she'd lived a great life from the way it sounds. If she wasn't going to die from a heart attack at her advanced age, exactly what would have been considered a death worth dying?

    I don't mean to be cold or callous in any way but...... come on. Babies are born, the old die. That's the natural progression of life. That is what is natural. What would not be "natural", is breaking this woman ribs away from her sternum, breaking her fragile bones, stabbing her with needles, inserting tubes, putting her on a ventilator, so she could rise only to be a shell of her former self... if she rose at all. All of that pain to prevent what is intended.

    This seems like a terribly sad and ridiculous way to remember this lady
    nae312213, kungpoopanda, Bortaz, RN, and 4 others like this.
  5. 3
    I agree with you its sad about loved ones thinking loved ones will live forever, and it is not natural to break ribs, insert needles and tubes, and we are not miracle workers. We also cannot make the decision on who should live or die by withholding treatment based on if we feel the person has has a fulfilling life, and we don't want to cause them any more pain . What you are saying makes perfect sense to me, as nurses we see these situations every day, but without a DNR order, the nurses should have started resuciatation
    rlev, sapphire18, and RNInterupted like this.
  6. 0
    I wasn't expecting to see a nurse I work with named in that article... Wow.

    I honestly didn't know that Minnesota had such lax laws.
  7. 0
    Those who are on the board and make these decisions should have their licenses pulled as well. IMO, they are just as responsible for letting incompetent nurses keep their licenses without so much as a censure. this kinda reminds me of how a parole board operates when they know darn well the criminal that is before them should never see the light of day, only to turn them loose on the public again where they'll return to their criminal ways again. I'm shocked at this but not surprised.
  8. 3
    Quote from wooh
    Wait, a person had a heart attack? And DIED? Shocked! I'm shocked!!!
    ....and at 83 years of age!
    rlev, sapphire18, and wooh like this.
  9. 1
    As a Minnesota nurse, I too found this article very disturbing. I have been in nursing for 25+ years. First my BSN then went back for my MSN as an adult clinical nurse specialist. I graduated in 2011 with my MSN and have not practiced nursing since. I absolutely loved what I did as a critical care nurse, after finishing my classes and clinical hours and prior to giving my oral exam the hospital I was working for as a nurse clinician was in the process of doing a workforce reduction. After reporting an unsafe nursing practice, I was sent home on a Thursday afternoon and told not to return to the hospital until the following Tuesday. I was absolutely mortified given that Tuesday, December 9, 2008 was the day that the hospital was going to start handing out pink slips. The Monday before I was to return to the hospital I was fearful that I was going to be laid off and had been crying since having been sent home the Thursday before, I decided that I would update my resume in the event that I was laid off. Since the only thing I had left to do was to give my oral exam, I was updating my resume for work as an AHCNS. After working on the resume for some time (crying off and on while doing so) I decided to save the resume as a draft on my LinkedIN page, and inadvertently posted it to the site for the public to view. Of course the next day I went into the hospital and sure enough, I was given a pink slip. My boss insisted that I was not chosen for lay off do to my report to risk management and insisted instead that it was a business decision, but I knew that I had made a few people in high places very angry and could not shake my belief that I had been laid off for trying to protect patients from an unsafe practice. In fact, the entire situation shook me to the core.

    I ended up clinically depressed for a very long time after that and never made arrangements with the school for my oral exam despite the fact that my Plan B adviser had approved my completed project and told me I was ready to defend the project in front of my 3 member panel. Instead, I disappeared into the walls of my house where I was haunted over what had happened and questioned whether I even wanted to practice nursing again. Eventually I did decide to approach the school and apply to deliver my oral defense of my Plan B project. This was in the spring of 2010. That is when things turned from bad to horrific. The Director of Nursing studies sent me a copy of the resume I had started working on with an email that read, "It appears there must be some misunderstanding. Your resume states that you have already graduated with your MSN;" $30,000.00 later (attorney’s fees to battle the School of Nursing and to be represented in front of the board of nursing), I now have a disciplinary action on my license and my name has been reported to the National Health Care Practitioner's data bank. At first sight, I had not even remembered ever starting to update my resume and instead believed that someone had duplicated my page, because when I went to LinkedIN to see it for myself, all I could find was my page with my BSN resume. It was weeks before I was able to find the page that had the resume which stated I had an MSN, and in fact, it was a totally different account. Honestly, to this day I still have no real recollection of ever doing it. I did remember being in a meeting with the other people in my office in which we were advised to update our resumes and get them onto LinkedIN and Monster in the event that one of us was laid off in the workforce reduction. After all was said and done, it was the beginning of the end for my career.

    The board of nursing did not care about the misunderstanding despite the fact that I never used that resume to get a job, or that I, by merit, had been the recipient of two health care scholarships (each one totaling $5,000.00); had served in the United States Army and was discharged honorably; was the recipient of a Presidential Citation from the Society of Critical Care Medicine for all of my committee work; that I was an active participant of the investigational review board of the University I attended; or that I was a sitting member of the School of Nursing Alumni Society Board; that I was, and had been, a certified critical care nurse for 10 years; that I had been a research assistant for one of my professors while attending school; that I had a published paper; or that I actively advocated for k-12 students with disabilities so that they would get the education they deserved; or that I have three children, two of whom have medical disabilities and rely on me to care and support them. In fact, I have not worked since being laid off, because at first I was depressed and knew I should not be working, but now I am too humiliated to even apply for another position, because I don't want to be looked at as if I am a liar by any prospective employer.

    Unfortunately I am an incest survivor who took to the streets at the age of 12, because I knew if I stayed at home I would not have survived, and as an incest survivor, shame is my middle name. It didn't matter to the board that I had eaten out of garbage cans and slept under bridges from age 12 until I entered the military, or that while living on the streets being raped by a stranger was less frightening than being returned home to be sexually abused by a person who was supposed to love and protect me. The board did not care that despite my extraordinary time on the streets that I never touched a drug or drank alcohol. The board did not care that the shame of my abusive past kept me from believing that I was actually worthy of doing something good with my life. I was 27 years old before I was able to muster the courage to tell anyone that I had never even graduated from high school. When I finally did get up the courage, I chose to tell a nurse in the admissions office at the local University. She immediately took me under her wing and helped me to believe in myself. Truth be told, she gave me life.
    Now 25 years later, a mistake I made during a stressful time in my life has resulted in another group of nurses taking everything I worked so hard to accomplish; away. Their rationale; I endangered public safety. I can’t help but wonder where I would be today if instead I had a drug or alcohol problem, or because I had made the decision to have sex with one of my patients, or that I failed to rescue my patient who was decompensating from certain death. Perhaps if I had chosen to be a drug abusing nurse who steals her patient’s drugs, goes out drinking and crawls behind the wheel of my car to drive over to the hospital to have sex with one of my patients’, I too would have been shown leniency by the Minnesota Board of Nursing!
    nrsyann likes this.
  10. 2
    If you read the story, this woman was an independent 84 year old who had made the decision to enter the facility to convalesce following surgery. If she had instead returned home with a home care nurse, something Medicare would have provided, arguably, 911 might have been called much sooner and she might still be alive today.

    I am sorry, but this is a classic case of nursing's failure to rescue. There is no reason both of the nurses should have left this patient alone. Unfortunately, this is all too common. I have worked in hospitals, one of which is located here in Minnesota, in which I have witnessed nurses who have failed to initiate ACLS protocol when patients clearly are decompensating and have met the criteria for initiation of ACLS. I am not talking about one incident, but many. The most obscene situation involved a patient who had been in VT at a rate of 250 for well over an hour on the telemetry unit. Despite a rapid response call that was made over an hour before the patient came to the unit, ACLS protocol had not been initiated despite the fact that there were 4 nurses, 2 new residents, and a nursing supervisor at the patient's bedside. Fortunately, the patient was brought to the ICU, at which time I advised that the patient needed to be resuscitated, but was ignored. I asked the crit care charge nurse who had responded to the rapid response call and whether defibrillation had been attempted, she advised that the residents did not feel that ACLS was warranted despite the fact that the patient was in significant distress. Their rationale was that they did not feel they could resuscitate a patient who was conscious, I of course asserted that there is a difference between being conscious with a brain that is receiving adequate oxygen secondary to adequate afterload, and then there is this patient's version of a brain without adequate oxygen who appears to be conscious, but instead is fighting for his life. The patient was given 1 mg of versed and a few joules of electricity, successfully rescued, and sitting up and visiting with his wife and daughter an hour later.

    This man got lucky, other cases I know of have not been so lucky.
    Last edit by RNInterupted on Oct 8, '13 : Reason: My intent was to quote the original author and then respond to their posting.
    spurs21550 and tori51874 like this.


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