This RN is one of those people that you look forward to your shift when you know she is working. Great nurse, friendly and doesn't mind helping out if you need it.
A supervisor let it slip this nurse couldn't be the only RN on the floor. Of course, rumors started about narc diversion and the like. I reasoned that she wouldn't even be on the floor if this was the case, but people like to believe the worst.
I decided to look it up on my state's BON site. This nurse was working on the floor of a local hospital a year ago. One of her patients was on a vent and the family had decided to turn it off. The physician wrote an order that stated "remove life support after the patient's daughter arives at 1:00". The daughter arrived earlier than planned, said her goodbyes and after discussion with the rest of the family, told the nurse they were ready. The nurse found the RT and told her to go ahead and remove life support. The RT refused, stating that the order said 1:00 and she was waiting until then. The record didn't say how early it was, but I'm guessing it must have been a few hours since it did say the family did not want to wait until one. The nurse wrote an order that stated "ok to terminate life support now". When asked why she would write this, she said that this particular doc was one that she knew well, and every time she called to ask him for something he would say something along the lines of "whatever you want or whatever you want to do". So she felt comfortable writing the order. They went ahead and terminated life support and the patient died a few minutes later.
The record did not say who reported her to the board. It stated that initially, the BON wanted to suspend her license for two years, but settled on probation for two years. The stipulations include a minimum amount of hours to work every month, her employer has to send a letter to the BON every three months stating how she is performing, she can have only one job at a time and cannot work home health, clinic etc - has to be hospital. Another RN has to be her direct supervisor, but doesn't have to be on the same floor as she as long as the RN is in the building (which isn't what my supervisor said). The remedial education is significant and she has to pay for all of it. She went to the hearing without an attorney. Maybe the reprimand wouldn't be this harsh if she would have had one?
After finding out about this, I will never do this again and I will discourage my fellow nurses from it. The only times I've ever written orders like this are for things like air mattresses, and recently, for tele when my patient was on a drip and no monitor for three days (yeah, another story all together:madface:). I can confidently say I will never do this again. It scares the you-know-what out of me to even think about it.
Just wanted to share....