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Is this legal?

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by BeenThere2012 BeenThere2012 (Member) Writer

BeenThere2012 works as a Registered Nurse.

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HarleyvQuinn has 10 years experience as a BSN and works as a Patient Wrangler.

197 Visitors; 35 Posts

One more thing....

I am guessing this still needs clarification...

I work in a psych hospital. The patients are brought in on a hold. Many are homeless and carry everything they own in this world with them. They don't have the choice to turn around and walk out, nor do they have a family member at their side who can take contraband home for them.

I'm not in a state where Marijuana is legal, but our psych hospital confiscates it and other illegal substances from patient belongings, too. We notify the supervisor and dispose of the substances (usually by flushing it) unless it's in a large enough amount to count as distributing. Admin will throw a fit if anyone notifies security/PD due to their "safe space" status of the facility. Unless it's distributing, of course. Beer is stored with the rest of their stuff. Medications are counted and sent to pharmacy.

We've confiscated quite a bit of Marijuana, some LSD, Heroin syringes, lots of narc/benzo pills without rx bottles, etc. There's no actual documentation of the destruction of the drugs or who witnessed what, so I've always wondered about the legality and liability of it all.

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BeenThere2012 works as a Registered Nurse.

1 Article; 6,749 Visitors; 764 Posts

I'm not in a state where Marijuana is legal, but our psych hospital confiscates it and other illegal substances from patient belongings, too. We notify the supervisor and dispose of the substances (usually by flushing it) unless it's in a large enough amount to count as distributing. Admin will throw a fit if anyone notifies security/PD due to their "safe space" status of the facility. Unless it's distributing, of course. Beer is stored with the rest of their stuff. Medications are counted and sent to pharmacy.

We've confiscated quite a bit of Marijuana, some LSD, Heroin syringes, lots of narc/benzo pills without rx bottles, etc. There's no actual documentation of the destruction of the drugs or who witnessed what, so I've always wondered about the legality and liability of it all.

We list Meds, bag and send to pharmacy. If there are any controlled substances, we count and co-sign with another RN.

Anything else is bagged and sent to the supervisor. In CA we don't flush anything due to preventing ground water contamination.

For illegal substances (including marijuana, even tho it's legal) and paraphernalia, the Supervisor then turns these things over to risk management who turns it over to the Police.

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kinney1008 has 5 years experience.

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In the facility where I work (Pennsylvania), it is not legal in the state, but even if it was, we follow federal law. I have found something as simple as marijuana lotion. I had to tell the patient I was taking it to lock it up and then a family member came to get it. It was not allowed to be in the facility, let alone be used.

Edited by kinney1008

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HarleyvQuinn has 10 years experience as a BSN and works as a Patient Wrangler.

197 Visitors; 35 Posts

We list Meds, bag and send to pharmacy. If there are any controlled substances, we count and co-sign with another RN.

Anything else is bagged and sent to the supervisor. In CA we don't flush anything due to preventing ground water contamination.

For illegal substances (including marijuana, even tho it's legal) and paraphernalia, the Supervisor then turns these things over to risk management who turns it over to the Police.

I don't agree with the flushing policy either, but that's their answer to disposing of everything. Rather than supply us with the cactus system to dispose of narcotic and other controlled waste when administering meds safely, their policy is that we have to rinse the extra half-tablet or left-over injection down the sink into the water supply. Contrary to all research and environmental studies showing that it's causing problems. That's how the largest corporation of hospitals works, though.

Management frowns upon turning anything over to the police. The facility used to cooperate with PD when they called and requested notification of discharge for patients (that they already knew were admitted) with active warrants. They passed a new policy last year banning staff from doing so.

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