Questions In Pennsylvania Nursing


Hi all, I am new to this site. I am currently in the middle of an investigation at work, suspended without pay. After reasonable suspicion I was called into employee health, submitted to drug screening, knowing full well that it was going to be positive. I am looking to find an addiction counseling program, and move forward with my life. I would want to stay in the nursing field but attempt to be in a non-clinical environment where I would not have to be medicating patients, at least for a good long time to make sure that I can fight my urges. How did you go about finding a reputable resource that can determine whether I need in-patient, or out-patient counseling.

My situation of not knowing whether I am being terminated, charged criminally, or placed into a assistance program at work is driving me crazy. Does anyone know if they charge criminally for diversion at the work place? It has caused a huge amount of stress at home, as worries are mounting about finances. I am not sure if I will qualify for unemployment, or what. I have already begun the process of withdrawing my retirement so that my family and I can make ends meet.

When the time comes if I am terminated or put into an AP, how long does it take for the BON to contact you whether or not they are offering you the monitoring/ rehab program for licensed professionals? Is it automatically offered to you as a first time offender?

Any help with these questions would be greatly appreciated.


670 Posts

Specializes in Impaired Nurse Advocate, CRNA, ER,. Has 34 years experience.

You need a licensure defense attorney. Do not try to defend yourself before the board. The American Association of Nurse Attorneys ( The attorney can advise you on employment issues, disability and other insurance issues as well as your licensure issues.

As for treatment recommendations...the longer the better. This disease can be as fatal as many other chronic, progressive diseases. Approach this as if your life depends upon it...because it does. Also, read as much as you can about the disease. Here's a good start...

Also, start going to at least one 12 Step meeting per day (AA or NA, it doesn't matter which, this disease is the same no matter the drug of choice). DOCUMENT every meeting you go to. Use a plain spiral notebook and write the name of the meeting and ask the chair person to sign or initial (they get this all the time). This will let the board of nursing know you are taking things seriously and are starting to deal with the disease without being forced to do so.

If you have your own professional , check to see if there is a license defense clause. Worry about getting into treatment and getting well. It's the only thing you have any control over at this point. Deal with everything else as it comes up.


What general area of the state are you in i.e. northwest, southwest, central etc.? I might be able to provide some direction if you are fairly local to my area.


1 Post

I live in pa in vrp program it is hard but you can do it

right now i am trying to find a job even appilied at

wawa but i am clean and sober and that is the most important



1 Post

Dear Petrified,

You most likely will be cited with criminal charges for diversion and rightly so. I lost my license for simply writing a RX for a addiction, no diversion....and it kills me that I lose my license but if I had an addiction issue I could still be working. I understand addiction however the criminal aspect with diversion is unbelievable to me that you could still have a very long road ahead of you...I wish you well...follow the program to the last letter and thank God that you still have a chance to keep working....nursing is an amazing profession

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