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Old 12-18-2007, 03:10 AM
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I agree PJ. It is a while since I checked any Controlled Drugs either in or out but I remember that both people had to sign for them. If you put your name to something it is best you have checked it.

I only remember one time when a nurse on a ward where I was a student was stealing controlled drugs. She was also stealing money from patients and that is how she was caught. I distinctly remember going out and buying a mothers day present for a leukeaemia patient (an adult) with my own and some colleagues money so that she wouldn't know that the staff nurse had stolen hers!
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Old 12-18-2007, 07:22 PM
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I know that some hospital in Australia, particularly in ED, are going to a one check procedure for some drugs. I'm not sure if this is all drugs or just Schedule 2-4 (not narcs). From reports it has worked well, but there are shift counts as to what has been used, there is also special training for the nurses involved.

The hardest thing to do is compare over the countries of the world. Without experiencing or at least seeing other systems (hospital) it is hard to compare the working conditions that nurses are in. Also remember that it is not always nurses who go off the rails, but also the doctors.
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Old 12-27-2007, 12:13 PM
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Originally Posted by DisappearingJohn View Post
We have had three nurses in two years fired for diverting narcotics in the ED...

It never ceases to amaze me... To work so hard to get to this point, get a license, and then just flush it down the toilet like that...

One I might have even helped, even though I was far from being alone in that category. We are a very fast-paced unit, and our "verifying" of waste can be a little on the "trusting" side. A nurse will say, "hey can you waste this with me", flashes a vial of something and says "This is 50 of demerol" as they throw it in the sharps container... We say "sure" and punch our code into the machine... Probably happens 5-10 times a night...

Turns out this guy pulled 100mg vials of demerol for every order, even if it was for 25mg... It became quickly obvious to the pharmacy, and "boom" he was gone...

A lot of us were thinking back, wondering if we had signed off on an illegitimate waste...
I've only had it happen one time - a nurse in my unit went to take out some Demerol. This was before Pyxis, when you just unlocked the narcotics door, counted and took one out.

She noticed the rubber stoppers on the bottom of the Demerol vials were all at different levels! Sure enough, the Pharmacy verified that the Demerol had been taken out through the rubber stopper and saline had been replaced! That was an amazing pick-up and I don't know that I would have been that observant!

I forget what happened to the nurse responsible - she had only been working on the unit a few months and was not very efficient (read: lazy), but never looked high, stoned, impaired at all. I know she was "let go" but I'm not sure if she was allowed to resign or if she was fired. This was back in the early '80s.

And we tend to "waste on the fly" in our unit, too. ERs can get really nuts and corners are cut. an ER, you can tell right away if someone is not working up to par because everyone is in everyone else's business: moving patients, medicating for another nurse who is busy, etc., and anyone not pulling their weight is VERY obvious.
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Old 12-27-2007, 03:08 PM
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It never ceases to amaze me when i hear the stories...most of the stuff on our unit is rumor but not proven. However, after a recent push to lock PCEA infusions up and double sign the waste it came out that an RN at another hospital in our organization was taking the leftovers and injecting it since the infusion contains Lido...I had never ever ever even thought of it as a possibility.
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Old 12-30-2007, 04:05 PM
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Unhappy Not just nurses

While I was working night shift in a level 2 trauma unit we had locum doctors covering the night shift. We had two incidents were we the nursing staff had to call out the doctor in charge of the locums.

The first was a doctor who would dissapear off to his car for supper/ a smoke, a colddrink. We would come back to the unit reeking of booze and was staggering. We called the senior boctor when he stumbled trying to get to a gunshot chest and was unable to get his steth into his ears. We heard later that he joined AA and was allowed to continue practicing.

The second incident involving a doctor involveb Pethidine 100mg amps. In the trauma unit we did drug counts at the end of every shift and often half way through the night if it had been busy. We used to keep the drug cupboard keys in a draw at the nurses station rather than trying to find the one person with the keys when you were in a hurry. The one night which had been particularly busy we were doing a random drug check at obout 01:30 when the doctor asked what we were doing. We told him and he told us he had used 2 amps of Pethidine 100mg on migraine patients. He then went to his night room to rest. We searched all the records to find these two patients but came up empty handed.

When the next patient arrived at the unit we battled to wake the Doctor by phone and one of us had to go shake him. The patient was a febrile 2 year old. We were already sponging the child when he came though and ordered 50mg Panamor Supp (adult dose). We managed to convince him to call out the Paed on call.
When he arrived we asked his opinion as the trauma doctor was now asleep with his head on the consulting room desk. The Paed called the doctor in charge of the locums and a drug screen was run. It turned out that this doctor had been writing scripts for phantom patients and pocketing the drug. The pharmacy was also fooled as he wrote scripts for his mother with cancer and took the drugs home with him. Not a one hospital but at five different hospitals. By the way his mother had died five years before this took place. He was struck off the role and we were given written warnings because we had not had the keys on our person.

The third incident involveb a enrolled nurse. He would arrive at work and be happy and carefree. His mood would slowly deteriate till teatime. He would come back from tea happy again just to start going down again till lunchtime etc. I found the dagga in the mens change room and confronted him. He was a Rusta and said it was part of his religion. I reported it further up the chain and he finished the month before leaving the employ of the hospital.
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Old 01-02-2013, 10:58 PM
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Surviving a nursing school and getting a license is never easy and I think everyone will agree to this, but why are there people who uses the hospital just to satisfy their own vices...cant they act professionally even just inside the hospital...its really frustrating to hear stories of such medical professionals, however its the reality!
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