Failed drug screen in VRP

  1. Has anyone failed a drug screen in VRP/PNAP and the board has made you start all over again? I am 8 wks from completion and made the stupid mistake of having a few drinks (alcohol is not my drug of choice) and bam was hit with an ETG test the next day. I'm being told this is a "relapse" and that I have to grovel to the board to stay in the program and start all over again. I'm devastated. I can not work for 3 months and have to have a drug evaluation performed. I have no way to pay my bills during this 3 month period. I'm ready to turn in my license and just quit it. I know this is entirely my fault but why is there compromise with the board? Its all their way or no way. They make us pay for drug screens that are expensive, at unreliable sites which are often closed when you get there and then punish us for missed tests. Where is the caring? The board treats us like animals.... so if I even could pay to continue this awful experience I would be in VRP for a total of 6.5 yrs. what is wrong with this system????? Please no judgey replies.
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  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   ericninetwo
    I'm not in VRP/PNAP but I am on probation with the CA BRN (FirstLab). I recently tested positive on a PETH test and they extended my probation 2 years. I know it's not the answer you're looking for just know that you're not the only one in this boat. Maybe since you were close to completing they will offer another alternative, I don't know. I feel your pain though because I hate every day that I'm on this ****** probation program which isn't even helping me at all except making me miserable. Keep your head up and I say that if you find another career then go for it cause that's what I'm trying to do.
  4. by   gnurse2089
    Several of us have been in the same boat. I tested positive for ETG last month after a year in the program (in California) and was immediately told to stop working as a nurse and then tested 8 times in a one month period. Luckily, my job kept me on as a ward clerk at the same pay rate for the time being, but every day I expect my boss to pull me in to her office and tell me they can't afford to keep me any longer. (I've been there for 4 years, no write ups, won the clinical excellence award for my facility last year...of course all this means squat to the BRN)

    In California it's pretty standard they'll add on 2 more years of monitoring for a positive test. I get that for some monitoring is a life saver and they really benefit from the program, and I respect that. For myself, I'm in it because of a one time DUI I got prior to becoming a nurse which is no longer even on my record, no accident or anything. I don't consider myself an alcoholic and no one who knows me does either. For that reason, I've decided to look at other career paths. I can't stand not being free to live my life. I'm currently on vacation with my significant other in Seattle and Portland. We both work incredibly hard and never take trips together. So of course, the BRN decides to call me two days in a row to drop a sample Sat and Sun which results in me scambling to find a way to the testing center which is 30 mins away from downtown Seattle. Don't get me wrong, it's still a good time but I'm so sick of this.

    Idk if you have a BSN but having a bachelors definitely opens up career paths, especially with clinical experience. I'm currently in the running for a customer service position with a healthcare startup that doesn't require a RN license, but the company would love to have someone with past clinical experience leading their team. I've had 2 interviews with them, hoping I land the job. It'd be about a 5 dollar an hour pay difference but, for me, it'd be worth it just to live my life again.

    Youre not the only one going through this and please feel free to vent. I wish you luck and strength with whatever route you take.
  5. by   Twoyearnurse
    What's been done can't be undone. The board will make a decision.

    Let's day they extend your contract. Is your profession worth it to you? One of the first jobs I had when everything fell apart was in human services. I made 2/3 of what I make now (which was more than enough to survive on). I was able to use my degree (we have degrees! And we can use them outside of nursing). That is always an option for you.

    You can continue with an extension (worst case scenario, hopefully). You've proven you can do it. Through all of the exhaustion, you can do it.

    Pace yourself and allow this disappointment to work it's way through and past you before making a decision either way.

    In the meantime, research human service/ public health education positions in your area that require a degree in public health "or related field". You have options. Sometimes just knowing can help you feel freer. Because you are
  6. by   IrishCMSRN
    Thanks guys for your replies. VRP sucks! But it really helps to know that others out there know how real these struggles are!!!!!
  7. by   tralnurse4support
    Oh my gosh, I am so sorry for this. I know it is upsetting to have to face the board again, and not sure of what your outcome will be. Try to reason with your monitor by writing a letter and plead with her to give you another chance. Do not give up!! It is hard and the board do not care why you missed a test it is so black and white. I went down to San Francisco to get an substance abuse evaluation done in order to get the cease practice order lifted due to a missed test. While down there I was chosen to do a test. OMG I did not have the lab form. I was so stressed out and immediately contacted my monitor. She told me get a letter from the doctor and maybe it could be excused but no gaurantees because IT IS MY RESPONSIBILITY TO KEEP THE FORM WITH ME at all times. JEeeeeezzzzz can I get a break? The SA evaluator was giving me a drug screen that day in his office. I am awaiting to see if the test will be excused as my file is already at the Attorney General office and to make matters worst I graduate in Dec from a RN, MSN program. I am so ready to give up but NOPE, I can not surrender all I can do and will do is push forward!!!! Hope this helps, it is always someone going through it and more. I hope you can get through it, I will definitely pray for you...
  8. by   ChryssyD
    Yeah, these programs are hard-core. No excuses. None. My case manager wanted to report me to the Board as non-compliant because I returned her phone call in 30 hours instead of within 24. She was a special kind of b***h. (Sorry, had to vent.)

    Anyway. Alcohol is a drug. Period. Not much else to say. A relapse it is. I know it sucks, but....

    I am sorry, though. They're making you do the whole thing over? 5 more years? That's rough. I would be crying for 3 days. Then I would say, Well, my mistake. Won't do that again. And I'd keep on keeping on. (I'm far more stubborn than any mule) But that's me. Whatever you choose to do, good luck. I hope it all works out.

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