TPAPN:a Four Letter Word?

  1. I'm having to go through TPAPN for a past hoistory of 4 DWI's. The last one was in 1991. I have been sober for for ten years, but that doesn't seem to count. My alcohol dependancy assessment that I had performed for the boards revealed that I didn't have a problem (and was verified with a polygraph), but the BNE required me to go through TPAPN anyway. TPAPN, wanted a new assessment done stating "the other one was too far in the past"(the previous one was done in Oct. '05). After finishing this new assessment, the counselor told me that he "didn't see a problem" and he "wasn't going to recommend any treatment". However, after talking to the TPAPN case manager the following day, he changed his assessment to read that I need Intensive Outpatient Treatment, 3 nights a week for 20 sessions.
    I was allowed 45 days from my initial licensure date to enroll in TPAPN. In the mean time, I obtained a job and have been working. I made my employer aware of my TPAPN stipulation before I was hired, and thus far, they haven't had a problem with any of this. This past week I was told by my case manager that I could not work until I got my assessment done and started the treatment that I need (she has never even met me and has only spoken to me on the telephone twice, but she can tell I have a seriuos problem???).I have a case manager that can only be reached maybe once a week. She will not respond to messages that I have left, nor will she answer her telephone. I have all of my paperwork completed, and have complied with everything I am supposed to do, and I'm ready to go back to work. Now I have to play the waiting game with the case manager, trying to get her to answer her telephone, or at least return my call.
    Thanks for letting me vent. Have a nice Labor Day Weekend!
    (Walking the Tightrope Here)
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  2. 57 Comments

  3. by   EricJRN
    Wow - it seems like a lot of people have turned on you at once. I'm wishing you the best.
  4. by   RN34TX
    None of your story surprises me with regard to the TX BNE's longstanding reputation of convict now, ask questions later (or not at all.)

    The best part of your story is how you've had 4 DWI's but the most recent one dated back to 1991.

    So to me, that means that either you've made some serious positive changes in your life and have stuck with them for a long time, or you've just been very, very lucky to not have been caught for......15 years ??!!!

    I sure am glad that my taxes and semi-annual Texas RN licensure fees are paying salaries to people who spend their work day worrying about and scrutinizing a licensee who hasn't had any problems for 15 years.

    On top of it, paying a basically absent case manager who is so out of touch with a licensee that they wouldn't even know if substance abuse problems currently existed for the person in question.

    I have a friend who is not a nurse, but is currently going through probation for a first-time DWI here in TX. He can never get in touch with his PO, only gets her voice mail. Every appointment he asks her about doing his community service because he wants to get it out of the way.
    For months she has kept on saying "I'll get back to you on that."

    After pressuring her during his last appointment (since his probation will be finished next month) she finally got the ball rolling and set it up for him.

    Then she slid in with a "By the way, if you don't finish your community service by the end of your probation period, it will get extended."

    Way to go Texas!

    I genuinely feel for what you are going through and wish that it could get handled in a much better and more productive way.
    Good luck.
  5. by   TheCommuter
    It would be nice if the Texas Board of Nurse Examiners paid more attention to these types of cases individually. However, they're punishing someone for something that occurred over 15 years ago. It all makes me wonder if they're really doing this in the name of public safety. Most BONs are out to supposedly protect the public while collecting money from licensees. They're collecting fees from nurses, but they're definitely not out to protect the interests of the nurses.
  6. by   Meryea
    Good luck with your treatment regimen &TPAPN. I learned recently from my nurse manager the the TXBNE is not in place for the nurses of Texas or to protect & assist the nurses of Teaxs but to protect the public from us!!!!!!!!!! Can you believe that? It all stemmed from a bogus complaint from an ER patient who apparently didn't get the care he felt like he should from our ER and he complained to THE BOARD. Two of our very experienced & tenured nurses were put on disciplinary notice by the board because of the complaint & ensuing investigation. Our manager accompanied them to Austin for the hearing. She was very upset angry and angry about the Board's decision. So what are we getting from our BNE??? :angryfire
  7. by   gauge14iv
    It isnt OUR BNE, it is the states BNE - and it always has been. Nor do they claim to be anything other than an agency given the responsibility of protecting the public from harm. period. I am somewhat surprised that people manage to get out of nursing school without this having been drilled into them. Our instructors repeated over and over "The BNE is not your friend and if you think they are, you are sadly mistaken"

    Your friend is your nursing assocation or your organization but it darn sure aint the BNE. Nor should it be. What you are getting from the BNE is a license which allows you to practice - and that is all they are going to give you. Even that is a privledge, not a right.
  8. by   RNRutRO
    [Have you been able to find a job? Would love to know if anyone knows any TPAPN "friendly" places to try and find a job. :spin:
  9. by   Magsulfate
    DITTO..

    Where are the TPAPN friendly facilities?? I have yet to find one.
  10. by   TheCommuter
    My facility hires nurses who are going through TPAPN. However, it is at a nursing home, and I know that most nurses aren't too fond of working in nursing homes and other LTCFs.
  11. by   Magsulfate
    Besides the nurses who actually participate in TPAPN, I doubt that many texas nurses really know what it is about. I have found that there is a lot of ignorance about the program. Does anyone agree with me? OR even CARE?
  12. by   Lacie
    Have you tried any of the chronic dialysis clinics or worker's compensation case management (insurance companies)? Look for Corvel Corporation in your area as good company to work for (google it as it's a national company with satellite employees from home also) . Also http://www.voy.com/140037/
    may be a good forum for you for support as it's dedicated to nurses going through just this situation. It's a great site with lots of those going or have gone through the system however flawed it may be. Good luck
  13. by   gauge14iv
    Quote from easttexasnurse31
    Besides the nurses who actually participate in TPAPN, I doubt that many texas nurses really know what it is about. I have found that there is a lot of ignorance about the program. Does anyone agree with me? OR even CARE?
    I would hope that's not true - every nurse in Texas is resposable for knowing what it is. In fact both nursing schools I attended had someone come and give a lecture.

    If it doesn't appy to you, it will certainly apply to someone you work with at some point. Every nurse in Texas WILL work with or encounter a nurse who is impaired. Those who think they don't need to know anything about TPAPN are kidding themselves. The statistics are just too high.
  14. by   Magsulfate
    I certainly agree with you that every Texas nurse should know about it. I am in TPAPN right now and have been searching for a job for 4 months. I have been treated like I'm radioactive. (another tpapn member coined this phrase but it is so true) Some hiring managers are polite when they turn me down. Some of them change their job availability all of a sudden when they find out, making that certain job I was applying for FILLED instantly. I have even been flat out told that they would not hire me because I was in TPAPN. Even though this is covered as a disability with ADA and I could file a lawsuit for discrimination. I was once told that I did not have enough experience to be a med/surg floor nurse. Even though I have over 3 years ICU experience.

    I just take it all in stride and keep that smile on my face. One day there will be someone that will look at me and see a clean and sober nurse who values her life and license. (LIFE first, then nursing license) Afterall, why wouldn't someone hire me? They would be certain that I was clean because I am forced to do random drug tests, unlike all the other nurses on staff. The honest truth is, there IS an ignorance out there about it. Otherwise, I would not be sitting here unemployed after atleast 10 rejections.

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