Florida IPN saga continues

Nurses Recovery


So, I posted several months ago.

I self reported a positive drug screen 5 months ago. I don't do drugs, it wasn't an intentional thing. Let's just leave it at that.

BON is finally looking at my case. I got a phone call from IPN that the investigator on my case from the BON contacted IPN for an "emergency referral". IPN lady said I had 24 hours to agree to get an evaluation and voluntarily withdraw my license. The ironic thing is I already got an evaluation per my lawyer, who is approved, but since it was not "IPN facilitated" I cannot use it with IPN. ?I knew this would probably happen but my lawyer was hoping to present it to the BON and not deal with IPN.

My evaluation I got on my own did NOT suggest monitoring which is amazing! So I plan on sending that to the new, IPN owned, evaluator. I'm sure he is in their pocket and financially driven to say that I'll need monitoring. I'm mentally prepared for that part.

My concern is I've received nothing from the DOH/BON. My lawyer says I have two choices. Play the IPN game, or try to deal with the BON, but risk a suspension on my license while they "investigate", and a public complaint on my license.

I can see why IPN backs you into a corner and makes it seem that the only way is through them, by their arbitrary rules.

I'm waiting to hear back from IPN. I knew I'd get sucked into this, but a positive evaluation made me think for one moment I'd prevail.

rn1965, ADN

514 Posts

Specializes in Med/Surg, Women's Health, LTC.

Oh man. Sorry. I would think they would have given you more than 24 hours and to call it an emergency FIVE months later?!?!?

That is crazy. Hopefully, with all you have done thus far, you will get out unscathed. My fingers and toes are crossed for you!

Specializes in OR.

24 hours seems a bit harsh, Also a bit illegal. Even when you buy a car you get 3 days to reconsider. Do they expect you to get an appointment and see thier quack in 24 hours too?

Ipnsux, RN

27 Posts

So I spoke with my lawyer and she suggested "deferring" the IPN referral and deal with the Investigator/BON. I spoke with the investigator and gave him my evaluation I've already had done. He said since IPN is now involved it may not be good enough. I love how even with an IPN approved evaluator, the investigator said they need to "maintain integrity" and since I "passed with flying colors on the first one" that I should be fine with the new IPN-facilitated evaluator.

Such horse ***!!! He insinuated that I could find someone who was an evaluator and get them to give me a good evaluation.

I told the Investigator the 3 closest evaluators have financial ties to outpatient rehabs in the area, why would they not suggest this for me if it helps their bottom line?... Crickets

So the Investigator said once IPN contacts him and tells him officially I've deferred their request, that he would send an official letter out. He said I could send him the evaluation proactively as a "response". From there it goes to the Board of Nursing and they decide my fate. I think I'll be able to go to the actual meeting, which will help and even the Investigator suggested that I be present. Once it goes to the board, it may become a public complaint, but at this point, I'm mentally prepared for it. Even if they mandate that I go through the IPN process, I can at least say I tried.

Stay tuned folks!

ruby_jane, BSN, RN

3,142 Posts

Specializes in ICU/community health/school nursing.

That's a lot. Glad you have a lawyer. But if you have a lawyer....why are you communicating with IPN?

Ipnsux, RN

27 Posts

@ruby_janeIPN called me, so I had to respond. I could have just made them speak with my lawyer directly, but I spoke with my lawyer and she told me my options. IPN was given my contact info from the BON. They told me I would have to get an evaluation from an evaluator of their choosing, even though I already had one.

My lawyer is great and keeping me from freaking out. Even if this ends up as an official complaint, at this point I'm done caring. I've been saving for months preparing for all this BS anyway. I can see how others put in this situation would just jump through the IPN hoops in order to not get anything on their record, etc.

Specializes in OR.

The IPN people tend to fail to mention that you have rights too. They also tend to bully people into doing what they want them to do, which is to submit to “evaluation” by thier stable of people who of course have financial reasons to “recommend” programs (that said evaluator conviently offers) ergo, recommending monitoring. Altogether now, can we say “conflict of interest”? I knew we could!!!

In the real world, this would be highly illegal....

Persephone Paige, ADN

1 Article; 696 Posts

And even if you go the route of dealing with the BON directly, taking a 2 year suspension, whatever... There's nothing saying they won't just refer you back to IPN. It all runs in circles. Just be prepared... If you are able, get it over with.

Specializes in OR.
7 hours ago, rn1965 said:

Oh man. Sorry. I would think they would have given you more than 24 hours and to call it an emergency FIVE months later?!?!?

Back when I was in the hell of evaluation garbage and In hindsight I thought it a little strange (thought it was a bit strange while it was happening but wasn’t where I could really do anything about it. See definition of bullying and intimidation) that thier ‘recommendation’ was “to begin inpatient treatment immediately for my own safety” when I’d been sitting around at home for 5 months. I was there for a 5 day neuropsychiatric evaluation or whatever BS they call it and had only brought enough clothes for that time. They even balked at my wanting to go home to tend to a dr’s appt and a lawyer’s appt (IPN was already forcing me into bankruptcy) and to get more clothes. Guess they were afraid of a cash cow getting out of the barnyard. You know damn well that was the plan because the family had been chatted up and manipulated regarding availability of the $$$ to pay for this joke.

If that’s not a scam, I don’t know what it is. It’s permitted because our license and our livelihoods are held by the cojones. No longer does any of this have anything to do with public safety or advocacy for impaired nurses. Sorry, if anyone believes that I have a bridge.......

Ipnsux, RN

27 Posts

@Persephone Paige I have definitely considered it. After speaking to the investigator, he said most likely my license would not be suspended because of the circumstances around my case. Plus they have an evaluation in front of them saying I'm safe to practice. IPN will try to downplay it and make it seem that the only route would be for their intervention but I want a shot to at least look at the Board. I know IPN is used to nurses just rolling over for fear of public complaints. I was close to just saying *** it, but I know what happened, and I won't go down without a fight. You're totally right. I could end up back in IPN. I don't think it would be a two year suspension. But I'm prepared.


6 Posts

Hey there! I’m in a similar situation and was just wondering if you had an update at all as to what happened with the board? I’m trying to figure out if I should fight a + drug screen (no narcotics involved or diversion) or just go through IPN. I have a lawyer who suggests I fight it, but I’m not sure the board will be so forgiving and I don’t want to risk having a black mark on my license and forced to go through IPN anyway. Anyway, I hope you update us. Thanks.

Ipnsux, RN

27 Posts

Hi @mamuchi7

well my lawyer and I self reported to the BON, NOT IPN. There’s a huge difference in Florida.

I then got an IPN evaluation on my own, which is hard to do. I googled IPN evaluators to find people because IPN doesn’t disclose their list unless you sign paperwork with them first. Your lawyer may know an evaluator willing to do it. IPN bullies these people into not doing evaluations unless it is IPN referred. They’re afraid of IPN getting upset and not sending them people to get evaluated. I got a list from my lawyer and google and a handful of them were afraid of this. It’s crazy how this program has even the evaluator scared.

it took several months for the Board to respond. You get a letter saying you’re being investigated and have 20-45 days to respond either in writing or in an interview. Do NOT call the investigator. Your lawyer will handle everything.

from there, it goes to the probable cause panel. As far as my case, I’m at this phase.

the investigator makes a recommendation but doesn’t decide what happens, the probable cause committee does.

get a new job ASAP. You aren’t in IPN now. It’ll give you a few months to prove you’re a good employee and then if monitoring comes up you can go from there. Right now make as much money as possible and save it. IPN will call you in the beginning of the investigation, just say you don’t want to enter at this time, you want to deal with the BON.

you are right, you risk having a complaint with possible discipline on your license but if you go straight into IPN know your life will change and it’ll be hard to get another job right away. Financially you might want to start working ASAP and have your lawyer fight your case. But this is always a personal choice. Speak with you case with you lawyer, many of them used to work for the DOH and have a good sense of what will happen in your case.

good luck! It does get better

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