Jump to content

Diverted drugs, got caught, fired and arrested...

Recovery   (41,124 Views 20 Comments)
by erem erem (New Member) New Member

934 Visitors; 3 Posts

advertisement

I am an RN. I made a terrible mistake and diverted drugs at the hospital I worked at. I got caught, then fired, then immediately arrested. I was recommended for outpatient treatment for 9 weeks and I am 56 days clean. I am a few weeks into a four month probation. Then the charges will be dropped. Law enforcement notified the department of health and I will tell them my situation, and how I am in recovery and eager to continue working as a nurse, and eager to join IPN if it will help me save my license. It will take several months for the BON to make their decision and in the meantime I can work and was in fact offered a new job in a different type of setting where I would not have to administer narcotics. My dilemma today is that before I start this new job I think I need to sit down with my new manager and honestly tell her that 1) I am on probation for the next 3 months, and my probation officer will be calling to verify my employment and let her know that I am being supervised by her. (my manager would not have to do anything). 2) I also want to tell my new manager that it will be very likely that in a few months I will be entering the IPN program, again in my new position I would not be handling narcotics and frequent drug testing, and the only thing she would have to do is send in the quartly reports they require. This new manager seems really nice and down to earth and I would like to start out at this new place knowing now if this will be a major problem for her or not. Is this the right thing to do? How do you think that would go over?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

catmom1 works as a MDS Coordinator.

10,515 Visitors; 337 Posts

I think that honesty is the only way to go. If this manager is as nice as she sounds , it should be fine.

As one hiring manager who gave me a job said to me: "Everyone makes mistakes. Yours just happen to be public." I was so grateful to him for this attitude.

Best wishes,

Catmom :paw:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

3 Followers; 95,681 Visitors; 36,467 Posts

Best wishes with the new job and in your recovery.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

772 Visitors; 9 Posts

I am an RN. I made a terrible mistake and diverted drugs at the hospital I worked at. I got caught, then fired, then immediately arrested. I was recommended for outpatient treatment for 9 weeks and I am 56 days clean. I am a few weeks into a four month probation. Then the charges will be dropped. Law enforcement notified the department of health and I will tell them my situation, and how I am in recovery and eager to continue working as a nurse, and eager to join IPN if it will help me save my license. It will take several months for the BON to make their decision and in the meantime I can work and was in fact offered a new job in a different type of setting where I would not have to administer narcotics. My dilemma today is that before I start this new job I think I need to sit down with my new manager and honestly tell her that 1) I am on probation for the next 3 months, and my probation officer will be calling to verify my employment and let her know that I am being supervised by her. (my manager would not have to do anything). 2) I also want to tell my new manager that it will be very likely that in a few months I will be entering the IPN program, again in my new position I would not be handling narcotics and frequent drug testing, and the only thing she would have to do is send in the quartly reports they require. This new manager seems really nice and down to earth and I would like to start out at this new place knowing now if this will be a major problem for her or not. Is this the right thing to do? How do you think that would go over?

erem , I'm reading your post and there are some huge issues that I don't understand. If you were arrested and the BON was notified, your license should have been suspended immediately. You must have plead guilty to something if they gave 4 months probation. Dropped charges ?? I'm not trying to scare you but BON doesn't give a hoot how "eager" you are to continue working as a nurse , they have listened to thousands of explanations. Being referred to IPN is just the start of a very long, expensive and difficult path.

I'm also bothered that you seem to have forgotten why you are in this situation. "I made a mistake and was diverting drugs" sounds a lot better than " I got caught stealing drugs from work". Please don't get me wrong : I wish you the best. Please stay with your recovery program. One more thing **** Hire a lawyer !

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

catmom1 works as a MDS Coordinator.

10,515 Visitors; 337 Posts

Good points, chances-r. Thanks for "keeping it real," as the kids say.

Catmom :paw:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

772 Visitors; 9 Posts

Good points, chances-r. Thanks for "keeping it real," as the kids say.

Catmom :paw:

A happy meow catmom.

To erem - PLEASE understand, speaking for myself and most of us here ; we feel your pain. I just don't want to sugarcoat the pile of poop. Everyones situation is a little different- some worse than others. What you need to know is the BON does not differentiate between anyone who is referred - thats where a good lawyer can be of assistance. If you are legally working now, save every penny because you are going to have many hardships and finances can sink the ship. I had a 2 year contract with IPN , but am barely able to put gas in my car. Bankrupt - facing foreclosure.

BUT ! You Can Do It !!!!!!!! Some IPN participants have horror stories, I have nothing but kind words for them. My case manager has been incredible..... Have faith in yourself and keep moving forward. Fight the good fight !!!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
advertisement

all_over_again has 5 years experience and works as a cashier.

3,200 Visitors; 113 Posts

It is nice to know some people who go thru addiction are quickly able to get their lives back. Many of us are not so lucky.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

934 Visitors; 3 Posts

Thank you I feel the same way and feel even better about this decision the more I think about it. I plan on making an appointment to speak with her on Monday. Thank you for your support.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

934 Visitors; 3 Posts

Maybe I need to clarify. I received a letter from the department of health to schedule an interview, (get my side of what happened) and they will do an investigation and forward the information to the BON. The BON will determine the consequences. (HOPEFULLY IPN with restrictions). Which my new job would accomidate. I haven't received anything from the BON that says my license is suspended. I was also told that by going through the pre-trial intervention program, which is the probation part of all of this, the case is still being passed in the courts and when I am done, in approximately 4 months, the charges will be dropped. I know what a pile of poo this is and believe me i do not in anyway take lightly what I did or why. All I can do is move forward and try to take back my sobriety, right? I am fortunate that I have the support of my family to help me through this difficult time. Thank you for your input.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

jackstem has 34 years experience and works as a Addiction Counselor, peer advisor.

14,767 Visitors; 670 Posts

Maybe I need to clarify. I received a letter from the department of health to schedule an interview, (get my side of what happened) and they will do an investigation and forward the information to the BON. The BON will determine the consequences. (HOPEFULLY IPN with restrictions). Which my new job would accomidate. I haven't received anything from the BON that says my license is suspended. I was also told that by going through the pre-trial intervention program, which is the probation part of all of this, the case is still being passed in the courts and when I am done, in approximately 4 months, the charges will be dropped. I know what a pile of poo this is and believe me i do not in anyway take lightly what I did or why. All I can do is move forward and try to take back my sobriety, right? I am fortunate that I have the support of my family to help me through this difficult time. Thank you for your input.

You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you (in court - if that happens) and will also be used by the board of nursing. You have the right to an attorney, even though investigators and BON's (and police) will say you really don't need one (YES YOU DO!). You have the right to stop answering questions at any time and consult with an attorney before resuming any interview (interrogation). If you cannot afford an attorney for the board investigation, one WILL NOT be appointed for you. That only holds true for criminal charges and trials. That doesn't mean you don't need or shouldn't have an attorney. It means you might need to borrow money from family and/or friends.

Do not try to do this on your own. Hire an administrative law attorney with experience in representing nurses before the BON. If you have your own professional liability insurance contact them to see if they cover licensure defense. Every nurse should have their own policy regardless of what your employer pays for or tells you. I wish the nursing programs would teach this stuff before we graduate and enter practice. The BON is not your friend and is not going to advocate for you. Their job is to protect the public from incompetent or impaired nurses (for whatever reason they are impaired or incompetent). As someone else said, this is as real as life gets. Hire an attorney.

The American Association of Nurse Attorneys (TAANA | Attorney Referral) or Referral Hotline: 866-807-7133

Jack

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

sissykim works as a Staff RN.

3,816 Visitors; 145 Posts

Jack,

Your reply was enlightening as it usually is, but will an attorney make much of a difference? I was told the board of nursing dance to their own tune and have their minds made up before the case is heard.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

jackstem has 34 years experience and works as a Addiction Counselor, peer advisor.

14,767 Visitors; 670 Posts

Jack,

Your reply was enlightening as it usually is, but will an attorney make much of a difference? I was told the board of nursing dance to their own tune and have their minds made up before the case is heard.

It's difficult to answer that question since I don't have info as to what has transpired to this point. Here are some of the problems I've seen since becoming a peer advisor.

  • Nurses rarely seek representation (or even a consultation) when they are first informed an investigation is underway. They wait way too long and as a result have damaged their case by the time an attorney does become involved.
    • They "spill their guts" to the investigator hoping it will make things OK or that the board will "help them". (Get that notion out of your head right now. The BON is there to protect the public...period).
    • This is why the Constitution says we have the right to representation and the right not to incriminate ourselves

    [*]Nurses assume the BON will help them since they are nurses as well. (See above)

    [*]Because of guilt and shame we have a tendency to unload when caught...it's such a relief for many of us to know we don't have to hide anymore. Keep your mouth shut until you have an attorney.

    [*]"I can't afford an attorney". Well, what are you going to do if you make a mistake representing yourself and you end up not being able to practice longer as a result of that mistake. Even worse, what happens if you end up having permanent restrictions on your license, or end up having your license revoked because of a procedural mistake? There are times when a consent agreement is extremely punitive and the nurse signs it anyway because they don't understand parts of the agreement are out of line. If you sign the agreement, you might not be able to get it changed when you finally do hire an attorney. An attorney might be able to prevent those kinds of things happening.

    • If you had a potentially fatal disease would you say "Oh gee...I can't afford a doctor so I'll do this on my own."? Oh, wait...many, many do when diagnosed with addiction. I'll do IOP instead of the more intense inpatient and long term treatments recommended for health care professionals. How many times do we see or hear of a colleague going the shortest or cheapest root and returning to practice way too soon, only to relapse and end up with even more serious charges or worse, dead?
    • I look at board investigations and potential discipline as the nurse's professional life. If you want the best outcome, hire an attorney experienced in defending nurses before the BON.

    [*]Even if the investigation and board action have already taken place, representation may prevent further problems if the nurse doesn't fully comprehend the consent agreement. More nurses end up contacting me because they "screwed up" by not understanding a part of their agreement than I'd like to see.

If a nurse isn't sure legal representation is necessary, a consultation my be all that's needed to get a better idea of what they are facing. It may also help determine if self representation is possible, or if legal representation is advisable.

Of course there are nurses who have a decent outcome without representation. So do many people with medical problems. I'm not willing to put my personal or professional life at risk these days. but then again, I'm older and wiser as a result of some of the feces I've been through in my life (although there are those who would disagree with the wiser part).

Hope this helps.

Jack

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Recently Browsing 0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×