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I turned in my mentor because she was diverting morphine

Posted

Specializes in Instructor of Nursing and Med/surg nurse. Has 13 years experience.

I had to turn in a nurse who was my mentor, friend, and someone I had on a pedestal. She made my kids baby blankets, we would trade shifts and I caught her diverting morphine. Diverting from a patient who had acid burns on his face on hospice care in hospital. This happened several years ago and after I turned her in I found out she had three other occurrences reported. This was back when we wore crocs at work and she had slipped on ice and broke her leg and became addicted. Throughout the years I have caught two more, one other was a PICC line nurse who gave the patient morphine and I caught him injecting himself at the patients bedside. This is so haunting and traumatic for everyone involved. It makes you suspicious of everyone overtime and each time I discovered it was by accident.

What are your experiences with this?

Traumatic is the exact word for it. I hate to see nurses become addicted. I can't imagine what they're thinking but it's great there are programs to help them kick the habit and continue in the profession.

Emergent, RN

Specializes in ER. Has 28 years experience.

I turned in a co-worker once. It was very stressful at the time. It doesn't bother me now, he is back into a monitoring program and working as an IV therapist.

amoLucia

Specializes in LTC.

Kudos to OP (and all others) for having the courage to do what most prob were some of the most difficult decisions ever to be made.

I've learned of nurses I've known/worked with who had similar addiction/diversion difficulties. Maybe because I'm one to just mind my own business when I went in, went home, went in, went home, etc, I never saw things occurring. And I was 11-7 LTC.

Even with narc counts, I don't recall ever being suspicious of anyone.

I guess that made me a lucky one.

TriciaJ, RN

Specializes in Psych, Corrections, Med-Surg, Ambulatory. Has 40 years experience.

I guess I must have led a charmed life. I can't imagine having to turn in someone I was close to and cared about. I guess all you can do at the time is frequently remind yourself that you're really saving that person's life.

hppygr8ful, ASN, RN, EMT-I

Specializes in Psych, Addictions, SOL (Student of Life). Has 19 years experience.

It does take courage to step forward if you suspect someone of Diversion - however this forum is more for nurses who engage in the care of person's suffering from the disease of addiction. Maybe we need to start a forum that directly deals with reporting or put it under colleague relations.

You would think they would just work a little overtime and buy smack. j/k

Seriously though, WOW!. I would feel nothing turning someone in for that.

How would it be traumatic for anyone other than the person getting reported?

hppygr8ful, ASN, RN, EMT-I

Specializes in Psych, Addictions, SOL (Student of Life). Has 19 years experience.

5 hours ago, DMQ48 said:

How would it be traumatic for anyone other than the person getting reported?

Agree with you. Even though they are highly respected by the public nurses as group have one of the highest rates of substance abuse. last I checked the stat was 15%. In the years I was using I tried to fool myself into believing I was a safe nurse. Still getting found out was almost a relief!

Hppy

5 hours ago, DMQ48 said:

How would it be traumatic for anyone other than the person getting reported?

In the OP's case this was someone she had known for some time. Someone he or she had worked with for some time. Someone he or she respected enough to consider a mentor. And, someone he or she considered a close friend.

On 6/20/2020 at 10:28 AM, InSchool4eva20 said:

I had to turn in a nurse who was my mentor, friend, and someone I had on a pedestal. She made my kids baby blankets...

If you had to report a close personal friend, one that you held in such esteem, wouldn't you find this troubling?

I think people use drugs to mask a sadness or loss in their lives. To give them some form of happiness, even if temporarily. The idea of pushing someone further down that rabbit hole of depression/isolation is something I don't think I could do

JadedCPN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Pediatrics, Pediatric Float, PICU, NICU. Has 15 years experience.

7 minutes ago, DMQ48 said:

I think people use drugs to mask a sadness or loss in their lives. To give them some form of happiness, even if temporarily. The idea of pushing someone further down that rabbit hole of depression/isolation is something I don't think I could do

Enabling someone also pushes them further into depression, isolation, and addiction.

I don't view letting someone keep their means of an income to be enabling

JadedCPN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Pediatrics, Pediatric Float, PICU, NICU. Has 15 years experience.

1 minute ago, DMQ48 said:

I don't view letting someone keep their means of an income to be enabling

Which shows, much like some of your other responses in other threads, why it is a good thing you aren't a nurse.

oh you've been waiting for that zing for awhile

JadedCPN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Pediatrics, Pediatric Float, PICU, NICU. Has 15 years experience.

15 minutes ago, DMQ48 said:

oh you've been waiting for that zing for awhile

I don't come on this forum to intentionally zing people. Your responses show that you don't have an understanding of the nursing perspective of many scenarios including this one. Your responses make me glad that you aren't a nurse. Just contributing to the forum discussion.

Edited by JadedCPN

40 minutes ago, DMQ48 said:

I don't view letting someone keep their means of an income to be enabling

Would you be okay with someone you loved being taken care of by a nurse who is using drugs?