Retaliation for voicing concern over unsafe pratices - page 20
Hi, I am looking for some insight into retaliation acts by employers.I am a RN in a ICU setting at a major teaching hospital.I have been a resource to my entire unit.I received a promotion only... Read More
Aug 15, '06tnn-
i too, was wrongfully terminated after reporting pt concerns to the facility's governing agcy.
i had worked there full time x 7 yrs w/o incident.
i was devastated for such a long time; and outraged as well.
i still don't know if i would do the same thing again, even knowing i was protecting my pt population.
i retained an atty who took my case on contingency-only a sm retainer was required.
i had that much evidence of retaliation.
just wanted to let you know that i just found this thread tonight and i fully understand your frustration.
wishing you all good things.
Aug 15, '06Regardless of how this turns out I would like to say that you are a very brave and honorable woman.Quote from TNNURSEJust giving an update on my case:
1. I received some of the healthcare facilities "alleged" proof that I allegedly documented vital signs early.....would you like to know what it looked like?
It was a blackened sheet of paper with no visible writing on it.
2.Their investigators even said it had no visible writing on the form.
3.I was fired only hours after complaining about the unsafe practices of a coworker (nurse manager s best friend)in a large ICU that resulted in what I'd call a sentinel event...in a effort to silence me they tried to "find" a reason to fire me.
4.The only document they did provide me with that actually had some of my writing on it that is "not" showing any s/s of precharting...has even been tampered with...someone has made very poor elaborate attempts to change my writing in a ink that is not the same as what I'd charted in all day...on the day in question.
5.The coworker has tried to make coworkers lie and say they saw an original that had my writing on it showing I precharted something.....and everyone is saying "no way...we never saw what you are describing"...not backing the unsafe coworker.
6.When my attorney requested a copy of the alleged peice of paper that supposedly showed predocumentation ....so that we could have the handwriting analyzed.....it became "mysteriously missing".
7.I have been put thru hell bc of my strong ethical belief that patient's in the ICU where I work.....should always have safe, competent , skilled nsg care.And now.....they "mysteriously loose" the very peice of paper that was so grand that it allegedly cost me my job...my family their insurance and benefits.that is wrong!!!!
8.The only shred of paper they have(the hospital)with visible writing on it.....regarding the alleged date in question that I was fired over.....shows only the unsafe coworkers handwriting as she/he..... at 5 am ....preforward documented the patient's weight 2 hours ahead of time. It in no way has my writing on it.
9. Mt atty is still trying to give the healthcare facilities atty a chance to make this very "wrong" thing right again......the atty seemed absolutely shocked the other day at what we showed them.This act by that unsafe coworker didnt represent the "core" of what that hospital was about. Most nusrses there are good, honest, skilled.....not underhanded and devious and downright dangerous like this one was.
10. In the months since I complained about this nurse not being healthy enough to work....he / she....has had a massive cva.Ended up in the same icu where we worked together at. Maybe they will listen next time.
11. This will be a good case for everyone to hear about...my end leagal results I mean.....bc....I am in hopes it will show that the trend is continuing to be "for" nurses who actively promote patient safety.
12...wish me luck.....bc ......I just want them to do what's "right" ya know.......thats all I ever wanted.
Aug 16, '06Quote from jmgrn65I went through a similar thing (with micromanagement.) Unfortunately, some managers will just decide to nitpick someone they "don't like" or "feel threatened by" until the staff leaves. Your reporting her friend probably triggered the "she made me look bad response." I would put in for transfer once you get cleared and reinstated. Rooting for you in a tough time!If your state is a hire/fire at will, then you probably don't have much action, see if they will allow you to transfer is that a possiblity? Talk to a lawyer. I have been thur something similiar, the new nurse manager just didn't like me, she micro managed and well I didn't do well with that kind of managing. When I went through our grievance it was a joke I was told that there was nothing I could do and that sometimes they just want to get rid of someone, I was offered a transfer, so I went to our sister hospital which i had previously worked at, it was the best thing I ever did. I hope everthing works out, this can be really hard.
Aug 16, '06Thanks Viking....
What has happened to me was horrible and very illegal. The emotional and spiritual turmoil....is horrific. To be accused of something so "unrealistic" for how you practice as a nurse.....and have to defend yourself....it is devastating. And now it is finally coming out in the open....they are having to admit to my atty that...... the "alleged" proof that they initially were saying they had.....was a lie too. Having to admit that they have nothing....but a black peice of paper....and another one that has been prominently altered with ...that unsafe coworkers very very clear writing on the front page. On one sheet that just looks bizarre......someone attempted to "alter" my writing and "change numbers" to make it appear that the patient wasn't getting unstable .The attempts at altering my very distinct handwriting was very.....childlike.An example would be Like ....they tried to change my 02 sats of 78 into a 98 by altering the 7. It was visually alarming to see it. The 7 was gone over and over retraced in different ink...to try and form it into a 9.Very easy to see that someone attempted to "alter" the thing.My writing is very "thin/lightly written" ...the attempts to alter this other document are done in like kindergartner style....heavy and bold and retraced and retraced and retraced. When you see something like that...it scares you.....it scared me. But ya know...those families that placed that trust in us...when they entered those ED doors......they are scared too. We need to be placed in a situation where we dont have to choose between our jobs or our ethics.
So ...I do want some good to come out of this.
Unfortunately some hcf'S DONT care about pt safety ( till they or their loved one is a patient).But ...alot....of these hospitals......are being legally sanctioned for condoning acts like the one committed by my old nurse manager and her unsafe cohort friend. The courts are realizing that if they dont provide the safety of allowing employees to report events like I did then....they can't provide the field for patients to receive safe care. When pts show up at our doors...they...and their families are so vulnerable and they need to be protected. Safe care shouldnt be the "lucky" draw...like the lotto.....it should be guaranteed for every patient that enters that ED door.And courts and leveling the playing field with big name hospitals who attempt to engage in that type of unethical behavoir.Employment at will...is still around...but that little law doesnt cover certain things. I have recently learned its ...Like ....if you are reporting a event that can result in harm to the public.....and you are fired for reporting that event...then it is very very much illegal and the employment at will doctrine doesnt apply at all. It is illegal for them to attempt to silence you for trying to do the right thing.before all this....happened to me.....I didnt know anything about retaliatory discharge. I didnt know what the terms like tort, temporal proximity and all that other legal jargon meant. I didnt know anything except...except....that my nurse practice act mandated and stated clearly to speak up ..and I did what my conscious guided me to do. I chose pt safety.....and .....I dont regret it. :yeahthat:Last edit by Keysnurse2008 on Aug 16, '06
Nov 5, '06Quote from hellllllo nurseto: hellllo nursetnn nurse-
you're my hero!
i am not a hero ....i am just trying to function by the n urse practice act...trying to keep patients away from practitioners that deviate from the standard of care...bc one day it will be me or perhaps you lying in that hospital bed.....and good safe care should be guaranteed. i will continue to give you guys updates as the legal actions i have filed continue onward. as more and more hospitals get placed on hospital integrity agreements...bc they have violated ethical boundaries....maybe one day the fines will be large enough for ethical violations that hospitals will actually stand behind their own ethics and compliance policies...bc now....it seems like those policies are just nicely worded articulate phrases....molded into a policy book for hospitals........with no real meaning.sadly they have lost sight of the fact that we are not treating inanimate objects...we are treating actual people .
Nov 5, '06So, the months go by.... and how are you doing, TNN? I went through a gritty exit from what I thought was a secure job last year. I've been working in a new job, and was happy until last week when I discovered the same pattern all over again. MEDIOCRITY HATES EXCELLENTS. It is a bitter, generations-long war we brought with us from the days when raw meat was all we knew. Good thing I like individual people. As a group, people suck.
Nov 5, '06Quote from panhandlerhi panhandler...i am doing ok (kinda).....getting sicker of healthcare by the min.im thinking of leaving nursing altogether after this is all over. i sent some documents to a forensic examiner....and the nurse that was "functioning unsafely" that i have talked about......well the results came by showing that she has forged quite a few documents in the medical record...things with my name on it down to the hospital administrators name on documents.i should be happy right? it proves exactly what i have been saying all along...so i should be happy. but...i am not. it just makes me sad to even be in the profession ( health care).even their internal investigation proved she was lying about everything...she was so inconsistent ( her "story" was discredited by others testimony). it was kinda neat to get informed/educated on how handwriting experts can tell if someone is right/left handed.....and it was kinda neat to see the expert blow up her handwriting to poster size and show how they had been able to easily prove she had forged even the hospital administrators signature to documents. it was neat......and kinda scary at the same time. she...is still employed at her job........my patients children still dont have a parent.........and i have filed suit for retaliatory discharge for being terminated for bringing her unsafe practices to light.so...after a recent promotion...tons of emails telling me what an awesome icu nurse i was....with never a write up......i was fired within hours of telling my manager( her best friend and cruise buddy) of the unsafe acts that she had committed against my patient. i was fired bc...alledgedly someone had scribbled in some vital signs on one of my patients medical records before that time had occurred....the writing was in a different writing style....and a different ink that the ink i had documented in that night....but the ink and writing matched her ink and writing style.......she forged items on a medical record and stuck my initials on some of them. so how am i doing?.....i am physically sick. i used to love nursing ( and still do )......but to see how healthcare politics really works....makes me ashamed to be part of the profession. my atty will not tell me 4 sure if the patient died ( trying to protect me and... he also knows id be at the bon and newspapers so fast it would make their heads spin).......................but.......deep down i know in my heart the patient died as a result of her inappropriate deviations from the standard of care. so....i am numb....":deadhorse :deadhorseso, the months go by.... and how are you doing, tnn? i went through a gritty exit from what i thought was a secure job last year. i've been working in a new job, and was happy until last week when i discovered the same pattern all over again. mediocrity hates excellents. it is a bitter, generations-long war we brought with us from the days when raw meat was all we knew. good thing i like individual people. as a group, people suck.
Nov 10, '06Hi TNNURSE,
I am glad you are starting to expose the truth, I am still awaiting that opportunity myself. It is so important for the public to find out about the deliberate deceptive practices of both the so called "Risk Management" dept and these scam Compliance Lines. I am still trying to force the Compliance Line at my former Hospital to investigate the retaliation that removed me from my job in the OR for reporting deliberate negligent understaffing. The significance of my case is that it goes to show that even the universaly accepted top Hospital in America is not imune to such corrupt practices. One of the most vital issues in your case is the way the Hospital's Risk Management targeted the person reporting negligence and incompetence that was well know by most of your coworkers. Risk Management and Compliance Lines were set up to protect patients from harm not protect Hospitals from those who report negligent practice. This flaw must be fully exposed before and major change is going to take place. It is a painfull process for those who have been retaliated against like you and I. My Petition to force the Compliance Line to investigate my case now has 2600 signatures and growing by the day. Please check it out at the PetitionSite.com "Investigation of Whistleblowers Dismissal" Thanks.
Nov 12, '06Hi There.
I'm a new registar, although I have been reading along for several months. I am so sorry that all of you have had to deal with the issue of retaliation, or retaliatory discharge. I have found myself to be in the same position, and I know how absolutely devestating it is! My mind, heart, and spirit has totally been affected. I will never be the person I was before I was retaliated against. The experience opened my eyes to things I didn't even know were possible. I watched, as nurses that I've worked with for years caused my patients to suffer, in hopes to make me look incompetent. I have had a clean record prior to my complaint, and like many of you, as soon as I brought my concerns to my HR, my ability to function as a nurse was put into question. I was accused of drug abuse, incompetence, patient abuse, etc., etc. How is it that the nurses I worked with for years and years, suddenly believed the lies told by my employer? Overnight, I went from friendly and funny, to horrific and distasteful. How could I have had a complete transformation overnight?
I honestly believe the purpose that the employer retaliates against the nurse is only to start the process of elimination, which is ultimately their fate. They monitored me, broke into my car, into my home, had coworkers spy on me, and all of my conversations. When they found nothing to discredit me with, they began to invent stories such as poor patient care, drug abuse, mental health issues, extramarital affairs, etc. It's unbelievable how many people will step back from you, only because of a rumor; or even more shocking is how many nurses will place their professional licensce on the line for their employer. It just shocks me to think about it. I can't understand this, and can only imagine that the employer came up with some edited tape recording, or video, to convince them of what a horrible person I suddenly became. Having experienced what I have experienced, I now know that ANYTHING is possible. You know how the HP employees accussed HP of gross privacy violations? I can tell you that it doesn't only happen in big name corporations, it has happened in my small home town, and in my home! My keys were taken from a coworker, and copies were made. These people entered my home, without my permission, without my knowledge, and without my presence. I can only say that whoever I can prosecute for breaking and entering, I will prosecute. I already have a "squeeky wheel", and when I'm done with these people, they will forever remember my name.
I will not allow them to contaminate my mind. they're not worth so much of my energy- I know that they will someday meet with Justice. If they don't meet with it personally, their family member will- and they will have to wonder if the terrible things that happen in their childrens lives, is a consequence of their actions. I know they will never forget my name, my face, and my fight, because I visit them when they sleep. I penetrate their subconscious, because they know right from wrong, and they can't hide from God.
We are fighting a war that we have already won. We must keep fighting, we must stay strong, because these people are too dumb to know they already lost, and therefore, they keep attacking. They're fighting with empty guns, they have nothing on us. Be patient, a fish is caught by the mouth. Their lies will continue to trip them. I want more, and more of them to be involved with the conspiracy, because the more people involved, the higher the possibility they will crack. It only takes one rotton tomato to spoil the bunch! JUST ONE!
We may lose sleep at night, but there will come a time, when we will sleep again. These people don't sleep, and they will never have a restful night of sleep again. they will never again experience peace, because they have turned God's gift to us, into something evil, for their own purpose.
God's greatest creation was life. We have been entrusted to see the start, and finish of life, and we hold life in our hands daily. These people who came against us, who used our patients to hurt us, are worse than murders, and they disappoint God. they were given this gift to touch/heal others, and they disposed of that gift as if it was a soiled diaper. They stepped on God's greatest creation, some of them took took a life, some of them made an innocent person suffer, and some of them just watched, as they suffered. All their hands have blood on them, and they will someday face these people, and God.
These same people will also be patients, and karma will make sure they receive justice while they lay in the hospital bed, or their family, or their families family. they brought home a monkey on their back, and it will be with them forever- jumping from back to back- causing havoc in their lives.
Don't worry about their fate- yours will be blessed. We know our hearts, and God knows our hearts. I will not fear death, because I know where I've been, and what I've done.
Evil will answer to the highest God- lets keep fighting a strong fight. We are being tested, will we be Judus, or Joseph? Will we walk, or will we fall? They fell, and they will someday be held accountable for their actions! don't keep your eyes on them, or what the employer is doing for them, the worst punishment they can receive, is living with their secret. It will fester inside them, and their family will rot while they watch- knowing it was because of the lies. they have contaminated their environment. Have pitty on them, for they are miserable already. they are like the dead- walking among the living. They created their destiny, and our Lord will come to our rescue.
I'm not a religious finatic- by any means- but I do believe in God, and his promise that if we keep our eyes off them, and on him- he will take care of our enemies. In such a corrupt system, we have to hold on to that faith- sometimes, that's all we have, and he's the only one standing next to us, rather than behind us, or on the sidelines.
In the meantime, I have a suggestion:
I suggest that all the nurses who have been retaliated against, or those who have witnessed it- join forces.
*I think we need to each write down our stories. Swap them with eachother.
*ALL of us will end up with the same pile, and some of us will begin to distribute them to the media- Major networks- shows like Oprah, the View, Dr. Phil, etc. We attack this as a GROUP, rather than an individual.
As a group, we are more powerful.
*This also helps our own cases, because it gives us documentation from other countries, other states- where management is manipulating, and lying in the same manner. It shows that this is something they learn, just like someone can learn to make a bomb on the internet, these employers learned how to retaliate effectively. That "story" is the same as "this" story... she was accussed of "this", just like I was. do you see how this can benefit all of us?
Nov 17, '06Hi, Please see my new post regarding the WI Healthcare Worker Retaliation Protection Act. I know several states have these now, they are enforced by the state agency that regulates employment discrimination. I dont know what state you are in, but you can easily find on line the state agencies that deal with these matters, email me if you need help, Ill do my best to point you out to the correct agency.Sorry I ddi not read through the whole thread before posting, good luck with your lawsuit, I am in the appeals process now regarding mine, same circumstances as yours, documentation tampering iand firing in retaliation for reporting unsage /illegal/unethical practices.IngaLast edit by Simplepleasures on Nov 18, '06
Nov 19, '06I sent this email out to as many people in my workplace as I possibly could, as well as news media, politicians, governmental agencies... I have learned that it is better to speak up, than to stand down. The quieter I became, the more power the employer had- not right! I am hoping that more nurses can learn that silence is detrimental to our cause, and our rights to act on the patients behalf!
Wow! I'm finally getting around to writing the letter that I've wanted to write for so many months now. I am sending this to the email addresses that I have somewhere on file, but feel free to share my letter with anyone who may possibly be interested in reading it- I am hoping to share much information with you, although due to pending legal actions, I must remain somewhat cautious as to what I say/write at this time. Someday, I'll be able to tell my story, in its' entirety- I'm looking forward to my day in court- where I can call a spade a spade, and crooked, crooked!
I'm hopeful that as you read through the many pages, you begin to remember my true character, and not believe what others have attempted to portray me as becoming; a diet-pill addict, who is suddenly completely incompetent, insensitive, and deceitful. I'm proud to say, that's not me! I am today, who I was eight years ago; the one that blurts out whatever comes to mind, who goes to the source of the rumor, who always has her foot in her mouth, who has an opinion about almost everything (right or wrong), and yes... the one who occasionally cries, when a patient loses their life. Because I can make a "jack-ass" out of myself, and we can laugh at me later... doesn't make me incompetent, or unstable- as some of my co-workers, managers, or administrators would like for you to believe. In my defense, I can only say consider the source, consider the motivation....
If I didn't have strong beliefs, and strong convictions- I would have bailed out of this fight a long time ago! There is nothing in this world that makes this kind of fight worth it, except for the fact that I refuse to let them beat me down! If they want to make an example out of me... so be it! But- I will be the example that I want to be- not what they want me to be! I am motivated because I seek justice! I am confident that my patients, my co-workers, my family, and myself... will all feel a sense of justice when this is done! Perhaps not to the extent that we might hope, or expect... but at least we'll experience enough so that we will know that Good DOES prevail over Evil! I hope that when this is over, you will feel empowered, and the spirit of the facility will lighten up! I hope that those with knowledge will become teachers rather than competitors, those who are hard will become soft, and those who are tired, will retire! I hope you realize your value, and live up to your potential! I hope that the nurses, therapists, nurse assistants, etc. at our facility will realize that they truly are the hospitals worth! There IS value in what we say, and how we feel! If we are doing our job right- we ARE the patient's advocates, we are their voice when they have none, we are concerned about their emotional, physical, and mental well being, and bringing up patient safety issues should NOT alienate us! Addressing topics like racism, or requesting that our employer eliminate a hostile work environment, should not make someone a moving target for retaliation! Requesting that racial slurs, and racial jokes be eliminated at work, so we could all work on level ground- should not be a reason to start false rumors! Patient abuse concerns should not evoke threats, or Civil Right violations!
I hope that even if I'm no longer working here- my fight will be rewarded by change in the way the hospital handles legitimate concerns from it's employees. I hope you all walk away with knowledge... I hope I defeat this giant, so that you can know that we don't have to be David, to bring Goliath to his knees! I hope my children are watching my actions, and they learn that hard work, determination, insistence, perseverance, self-worth, and faith bring results.
I hope that by sharing some of my story with you, the rumors will be put to rest, minds will be put to ease, and fear will be lost.
But, if this is all in vain, and I'm forgotten by tomorrow- I will still feel confident in the decisions I've made- that ultimately led to my termination. I know whom I stood up for, and why I stood up- and as long as truth is on my side... I believe justice will prevail.
I don't even know where to start-
I guess I want to start out by saying that I really do miss many of the friendships I made at the hospital. Even those friendships that never blossomed, those who were friendly faces, old acquaintances... in the 8 years I was there... I can honestly say that looking at a familiar, friendly face is something I probably took for granted. I was definitely guilty of taking things for granted- that's for sure! This year- I think my biggest lesson is how incredibly insignificant some things are, and how incredibly significant other things should be.
A statement I made at my 20-year reunion this year (yeah... I'm getting that old) was that "Family is Everything, and Many people have many friends, but only a few people have best friends"- some of you probably already knew that... others will probably have to learn it for themselves... and hopefully others will just take my word for it! Family IS everything, and BEST friends are rare. Who I surround myself with has been a major change in my life... I have learned that the number of people who show up at my funeral, or at my party- does not determine the value of my life. What is important is QUALITY, not QUANTITY.
I've learned that it's important to surround ourselves with people who are more of an extension of ourselves, but different in ways that compliment us. They should represent who we are... they should inspire us, motivate us, and encourage us...
Protect yourself... as nurses, or people in the medical field- we have a tendency to give, give, give... make sure we also receive... keep our cup full enough, so that we may continue to give.
So- let me give you a BRIEF rundown of the situation at hand... where I've been, how I got there, and where am I now...
October 2005- Wow! That's a whole year ago! Time flies, when your running for cover... doesn't it?! Anyway, continued with my never-ending diet regimen; Weight-watchers, kick-boxing, Nutrisystem, and then Phenteramine. Vanity sucks!
Anyway, wouldn't you know it, on the night of the Christmas party- I kick myself into A-fib (side note: Phentermine and dancing don't mix!) I was admitted into the ICU, after the ER RN couldn't persuade me into defibrillation in the ER! Doctor P did what Dr. P does best... he cured me, and the next day, after telling me how crazy I was for taking diet pills to begin with, I was discharged from the ICU. (Of course, he soon learned that other day shift ICU nurses were as crazy as I was, as several of them admitted that they were taking the same diet pills... and yes! The Rx for me was valid!)
Anyway- that hospitalization gave me the right to take some time off work- which I jumped on immediately, because my son needed my undivided attention, and swapping my schedule to accommodate his appointments proved to be nearly impossible.
At home, I was just beginning to open a door that I had allowed to stay closed for 12 years. My son was having a difficult time in school... his grades dropped dramatically, his memory began to fail him, and his self-esteem took a big hit! That was one of the darkest moments in my life- to watch my child suffer... the memory still brings me to tears!
You could look at the cardiac episode as dumb luck...
One nights stay in the hospital opened the door for me to stay home with my son for 6-weeks!
Well, after being evaluated by 3 Psychologists, 2 Psychiatrists, and 2 Counselors, my son was diagnosed with ADHD, and Chronic Depression! HUH???
This came out of left field for me, although it was really always right in front of me! He's a very good boy, so even when his teachers would question me as to whether or not he had been evaluated- I didn't think it was even a possibility, since ADHD was mostly associated with hyperactivity... and depression... why would he be depressed? He had everything a kid could want?
Wow- what a blow to me, as his mother... and for my son! At least we had a name to attach the symptoms to- and finally a path to take! Reluctantly, we started him on medication- not something a parent wants to ever have to do- I'm sure! It all turned out though... He no longer feels like "the dumbest kid in the smartest class"! His grades are better, and the school didn't kick him out of the accelerated program! So, in the 6-weeks I was off- we accomplished much, and I was so ready to return to work...
What in the world was I thinking? First day back- a co-worker requests my support with HR in her claim of Hostile Environment. I think I'm going in just to back up her statement... validate her claim... little did I know my statement was about to become HR's primary focus! (Another side note... DOCUMENT, DOCUMENT, DOCUMENT- And KEEP your own copy!) I guess 5 years of documentation was enough to put me in the spot light- but really, I didn't want the spot light! Who knew it would end up like THIS... a year later, I would be fighting for my job, fighting for patient safety, fighting for equality... All I wanted was a smile- be it fake or real... just smile when you're at work... how hard is that? Apparently, it's very difficult for some people...
Of course, I do intend on clearing my name, and have brought charges against those who completely violated my Civil Rights, my Union Rights, my Co-workers Rights, and my Patients Rights!
First day of my complaint, I received threatening phone calls from a co-worker, to the point that I began the process of filing a restraining order. I was also removed from my work, without my request by my employer, because of "stress"... I had to literally plead my case-only to return to an even more hostile/stressful environment.
After filing my complaint with HR, I was harassed to the level of pervasiveness. My calls were monitored, my work was unfairly scrutinized, my clothing was criticized, my conversations with anyone was under surveillance, I was not talked to by co-workers, not offered help, not offered breaks... my friends were harassed, as were my witnesses... and we were instructed to keep quiet about all of this... Hospital Policy states it is to remain confidential! Yes... that's what we were told... but- PUBLIC POLICY states otherwise! If we raise concerns in the interest of the public, and we are retaliated against... we can bring the original concern, as well as the unfair treatment we received from raising that concern, to the public. Also, if raising our concerns in a public forum harms the company, financially, or otherwise, the employer cannot terminate the employee because of the interest of Public Policy.
My patients were acted upon- not by me, but because of me! I have not been witness to physical abuse- not to myself, or by myself... not to someone I love... not to my patients. This past year, I witnessed things that will forever penetrate my soul. Someday, I do expect these people to answer for the lies they told, and what they did to innocent people. I know that justice will prevail here... and in heaven!
In May, out of pure spite, co-workers accused me of "unusual behavior, poor patient care, and diet pill abuse". (I was off the Phentermine months earlier!) Never was this "concern" brought to my attention, or to the attention of my employer and/or managers! This accusation was made only AFTER the completion of an internal investigation, and was taken directly to the Board of Nursing (who, by the way, dropped the complaint- noting that it was clearly out of retaliation!) When I questioned a co-worker about it, she admitted that it was out of retaliation for issues I had raised!
My co-workers stole my house/car keys while I worked, and these people came to my home, and unlawfully entered. (Locks were changed, and alarm is always on)
Rumors have surfaced about the cause of my termination- all of them false, I assure you (anyone who would like to review my termination letter is welcome to see it).
Medical Records, and other documents have been altered to protect the guilty- People who I thought were good, I learned were capable of things that go against our grain, as not just healthcare givers, but human beings! What causes people to turn so dramatically to the dark side? I don't imagine I'll ever really know what makes someone go against his or her core...
I hope that in whatever downfalls I may have, or mistakes I may make... I don't become responsible for the intentional infliction of pain, or emotional distress toward another human being. I hope that I will always respect people for who they are, where they are, and what they are.
I am actually quite sad that these individuals, or their families will suffer because of their actions. A part of me wishes that I could turn back time... so these people wouldn't have had to react like a cornered wild-animal!
I really believe that God already knew what was going to transpire when I raised my concerns. I believe I was put to the test, and so was everyone else in the ICU. The core of who we are, who we thought we were- was completely exposed to everyone. I believe that even those people who think they got off clean, know the truth... how can they expect to enter heaven with blood on their hands?
I would rather suffer because I stood up for something right, than suffer because I did something wrong. I will sleep at night... they will forever have restless sleep. My children will not suffer because of my actions... Karma is something I look forward to-
They may change jobs, they may move out of state... change shifts... whatever they do in life- their own reflection is something they can't run from. Justice has already surfaced, and I haven't even had my day in court yet....
Although I am writing with all the passion I have within me, I am also writing with much thought, consideration, and reconsideration. My hope is that I am able to possibly give some type of answers to many of the questions. I hope to be able to prove to you fact from fiction. I hope that my position gives strength, hope, and knowledge to you. If you think "well, look what happened to her, when she spoke up... that can happen to me if I speak up too..." Let me remind you that you have rights, and I am indeed asserting mine!
1. I have THREE complaints on file with the EEOC- alleging discrimination, retaliation, and retaliatory discharge. The government is investigating my complaints, and demanding documentation from the employer! If you have anything you feel they would be interested in looking at, please email me, and I can point you in the right direction! I am also quite educated on Civil Rights, and Employee Rights- I welcome any questions, and if I can't provide answers, I know where you can find them...
2. I have a complaint on file with the Labor Commissioner, who also feels my allegations warrant an investigation, and have agreed to pursue my complaint.
3. I have TWO complaints on file with the NLRB, one against the employer, and another against the Union- both are for unlawful conduct, unfair labor practices, unequal treatment, failure to investigate. According to a recent conversation, I believe my charge against the employer is accepted, but will know more next week. If you have anything you would like to bring to their attention, please email me...
4. I filed complaints against several of the nurses, supervisor, manager, and DON with the Board of Nursing for falsification of medical records, failure to protect patients, patient abuse, discrimination, patient safety, filing a false complaint with malicious intent. As soon as certain information is documented, I intend to provide the evidence to the Board of Nursing, and prove perjury as well. If you have any valuable information that you would like me, or the BRN to review, please email me.
5. I have learned about the criminal backgrounds of the people I work with- it's shocking that the ones who live in glass houses are the ones throwing stones! (by the way, if anyone wants to find out any criminal history on people, all you need is a SSN, or date of birth- go to the criminal justice courthouse- and felonies, misdemeanors, etc are all public record! Marriage, divorce, property ownership... they are all public record as well, which is found at your local court records office. If you want to find out about your employer, and how they conduct business- that information is found at the Superior Courthouse, where you can review who has sued, who the employer has sued- hard copies can be reviewed, ordered, and photocopied)
6. The Board of Nursing has also supplied evidence of disciplinary actions against nurses- past, and present- some, whom I had already brought concerns about to my managers (who did nothing), are in the process of having disciplinary actions taken against their nursing license. (With the board of Nursing, I found out that it is prudent to contact the Board if you have brought concerns to your employer, and those concerns are not addressed. The board keeps the complaints on file- so if you bring a confidential complaint to them- even if they drop it... if someone else brings a complaint about that same nurse at a later date, they will have the other one on record. I'm not talking about contacting them from silly things, b/c the BRN takes a very long time to investigate- but if someone is clearly violating the BRN codes/laws, and the workplace doesn't address it... don't think that you are powerless. This is also true for managers and/or supervisors. They have the responsibility to make sure that nurses are functioning appropriately, and if they are failing to protect the patient, they are held responsible by the BRN.)
7. I have contacted OSHA, JACHO, DHS, and APS for unsafe work-conditions for staff, unsafe patient conditions due to toxic environment, questionable record keeping, patient care concerns possibly leading to patient injury and/or death, whistle-blower violations... etc. Of course, these were brought to the governments attention only after my concerns went unheard by the employer- I definitely attempted to work with the employer, provided them with documentation of concerns- but only met with retaliatory actions... go figure!
8. I have contacted politicians (whose names I will keep confidential at this time), requesting that they bring these concerns to light, so that people who raise issues on behalf of patient care and/or misconduct in the workplace do not experience what I have experienced. I brought up concerns about employers attempting to intimidate, bribe, and negotiate with witnesses, other employees interfering in investigation processes, and the possibility of raising the severity of the punishment for these types of offenses. If these behaviors/actions were taken against a governmental employee, the employer and/or employees would serve prison time... I think that would be a deterrent for many individuals, which would probably eliminate half of the whistle-blowing, wrongful termination, and retaliation complaints.
9. I have also contacted the media, hoping to bring attention to this behavior, and have also been in contact with past plaintiffs, employees, and patients who have been victimized by these individuals.
These are only some of the things I have been working on... believe it or not... I do have a personal life, and all my energies are not spent on work-related issues. I am definitely pursuing other avenues for work... When one door closes, another door opens...
The time off has provided me the opportunity to re-evaluate my life, and it's direction. I had completed my education in forensic nursing, and I am looking at how/where that can benefit me, and the public... but I have also become quite interested in the political arena of medicine, and labor law. Who knows...
I hope that this information has enlightened you; I hope that you know that the door swings both ways... the justice system does work, if you know how to make it work for you! Take advantage of the internet- there's a great site for nurses, nurses.com -
search the safety and/or retaliation chats- gain knowledge. Gain strength.
For those of you who know my character... my work ethic... me...
I am going to arbitration with the Union against my employer (that's a whole other story- but will email it to you, if you would like to know how the system really works)... Anyway, I am hoping to obtain some references in support of my job ethics, my function as a nurse... whatever memories you may have of me...
If any of you would feel comfortable enough to provide me with a brief statement, it would be much appreciated!
To all of you- I hope you have a great holiday- stay healthy, stay safe... and thanks so much for reading my story!