Gave medication without an order...

  1. I am an RN who worked at a hospital. A very Trusted RN and I were admitting a Patient. My shift was coming to a close and our unit had received two back-to-back admissions which put us undergrid for our staffing. I was charge RN for that night. I was assigned a patient, which was customary practice for the charge RN on our unit, and I picked up a second patient to allow one of my staff to receive the first of the two back-to-back admissions. The Trusted RN was a day-shift nurse who graciously agreed to come in about 30 minutes early to take the second admission. Trusted RN had been a nurse on our unit for greater than a decade. Trusted RN had trained me and was my mentor. Trusted RN was the primary nurse for the Patient. I was acting as Trusted RN's runner, meaning I brought to Trusted RN medications and materials Trusted RN needed while Trusted RN remained with and processed the Patient. Trusted RN and I were about to preform a painful procedure on the Patient. Trusted RN asked me to get him a narcotic, so I did. Trusted RN asked me to give a certain amount to the Patient, so I did. I did not verify the existence of an order. I believed Trusted RN had received a verbal order from a doctor. I did NOT believe Trusted RN would ever betray me or risk our jobs, licenses, or the Patient's welfare. I knew Trusted RN to be a conscientious, cautious, and compassionate nurse. I discovered the next night upon review of the Patient's chart that Trusted RN had not received an order for the narcotic. Trusted RN DID document that the narcotic had been given. Trusted RN was fired within the week. I worked for four months before the case was reinvestigated. The case was reinvestigate because Trusted RN changed his testimony. I was subsequently suspended, then fired for reckless conduct. I was told this is a reportable offense. I was told to hire an attorney. I have NOT been told conclusively that this will go to the BON. The Patient was harmed after receiving the medication. I do NOT know if the medication was a causative agent or simply an exacerbating agent or if it has even been considered a factor at all. I do NOT believe I acted recklessly. I admit to negligent conduct. I acted under a false belief. I acted in good faith that there existed an order and that the Patient needed the narcotic. It was a common procedure we were about to perform and a commonly ordered narcotic. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? I have been trying to find work and it has been difficult. I have told the truth both to my former employer and prospective employers regarding my participation in all of this. My managers and the director of nursing supported and defended me through the investigation and continue to support me. I have grieved the termination, but have yet to attend a grievance meeting. I do not want to lose my license. I admit I made a mistake.
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    About Winding_Creek

    Joined: Mar '12; Posts: 1; Likes: 3


  3. by   Mulan
    Sorry to hear this happened.

    You can't trust anyone.

    I would talk to a lawyer if you haven't already.
  4. by   VivaLasViejas
    I too am sorry that you're going through this. But I'm also concerned about you posting so much information on an anonymous Internet forum, rather than seeking the advice of a qualified legal professional. Usually, the less said in public, the better....if someone wants to investigate further, all it might take are a few mouse clicks to identify you and your workplace. Best of luck in resolving this problem.
  5. by   NRSKarenRN
    I can easily see how this happened while admitting a patient relying on verbal orders. Report this immediately to your malpractice carrier (good reason to have own policy), If without malpractice insurance, seek advice of legal counsel immediately to protect yourself and any potential action with BON.

    The American Association of Nurse Attorneys is a resource we recommend. Closing to protect your future.