I am in my final year of nursing school, and I have seen situations during my clinical rotations that I think would make it way too easy for someone to steal narcotics.
The policy at the hospital where I worked during my last rotation is that narcotics have to be signed out by two RNs...the one who will be administering the med, and another RN to witness. I was shocked to see that there were people who would just sign it out, and then leave the sign-out sheet on the med room counter, with the unspoken understanding that the next RN to come into the med room would sign as their "witness".
When I brought this practice up with my clinical instructor, I was again floored when she said that this was common practice, as the nurses were "covering each other" because it was too time-consuming to find another RN to come into the med room for a second to sign off with you. Whaaaaaat?
As a new grad in 2007, I don't care if other nurses label me as "difficult" or whatever, I am NOT going to be doing this for anyone, and I will be dragging the nearest RN into the med room with me whenever I need to sign out narcotics...with a bright smile and the promise that they can drag me in to sign for them whenever they need to do so. What the heck is the policy for if no one follows it?