Addiction is a sad reality

Jun 8, 2013 | Posted by: roboblogger | Full story: Estes Park Trail-Gazette

It can happen in Watts, in Harlem and even in pristine Estes Park. A recent alleged incident here has caused a police investigation into a situation possibly involving abuse of illegal substances by an individual at the Estes Park Medical Center.

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1 - 15 of 15 Comments Last updated Jun 21, 2013
Inability to spell is a

Estes Park, CO

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#1
Jun 8, 2013
 

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sad reality as well, and you don't have to be a Scripps-Howard Spelling Master to know how to look at red squiggly lines under misspelled words like "leong" and wonder if there is a better way to spell it.
Inability to spell is a

Weaverville, NC

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#2
Jun 9, 2013
 
wsay of life.
Estes Park

United States

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#3
Jun 11, 2013
 
Julie
Thanks for the informative article. However, your article only focused on the nursing profession as having a substance abuse issue which is somewhat misleading. According to the drug rehab site 12-15% of all health care professionals which includes physicians experience substance abuse during their career. Exposing the public to the magnitude of substance abuse will keep the public better informed.
Estes Park is fortunate because it has a premier substance abuse center. For more facts and information on the subject you can contact the CEO, Dot Dorman at Harmony Fondation and see the link below. http://www.drugrehab.us/news/doctor-nurse-add...
FYI

Boulder, CO

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#4
Jun 12, 2013
 

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The EPMC nursing mangers M.E. and P.K. have some responsibility in perpetuating narcotic abuse and theft.The EPMC controlled substance policy states that any losses or theft must be reported to the pharmacy director immediately. On March 11th 2013 ED director M.E. found 5 meperidine syringes on nurse L.B after she fainted. The EPMC controlled substance policy was never followed; M.E. never informed the pharmacy director or local police. The EPMC pharmacy was made aware of the narcotic issue after a billing staff member questioned a narcotic charge for a patient that was not in the hospital on the day the narcotic was taken for that patient. At that point pharmacy ran complete narcotic reports and realized the large scale of the narcotic theft. L.B. was concealing her narcotic theft by writing fraudulent physician order making it hard to detect. Four occurrence reports were written by the pharmacy (from 11/27/12 thru 3/11/13) and given to L.B.’s mangers M.E. and P.K.. No action was taken on any of these reports by these managers perpetuating the addiction as well as allowing an impaired worker to perform patient care. Not acting quickly and decisively has allowed the nurse to continue to work at another location that has no idea about her level of addiction and what crimes she will committo obtain narcotics. This nurse still has a license and the ability to work in nursing at this point.
Guess What

Longmont, CO

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#5
Jun 17, 2013
 
There is a second nurse that has a narcotic issue and nursing Interim CNO MaryAnn England has covered it up. D.C from medical records came across records of patients that had narcotic charged for without physician orders. They were all removed by nurse P.B-H.. Several hosptial occurence reports were written about this. MaryAnn England explained these all as documentation errors. No further reporting was made on this set of narcotic errors. This is far from a "Zero Tolerance" claimed by hospital administration.
Inside Out

Denver, CO

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#6
Jun 17, 2013
 
No Surprise.

There aren't just 2 though. Drug abuse isn't just stealing injectable narcotics, it's using prescription meds to escape reality, who doesn't do that a little? Whether it's alcohol or prescriptions or injecting stolen meds, there are very few adults that haven't done it. So you can stop throwing stones at the small percentage of nurses that are getting caught. Maybe epmc will do something about it, but i'd put my money on THEY WON'T and claim some BS rule about staying quiet. Deal with the issue as a whole and sooth the community or your expensive campaign to LOWER PRICES will be worth nothing- although it already is. Maybe 1 or 2 people bought the ad and said "Let's go to EPMC Honey, they're cheaper now". Please.

It doesn't matter what you do to educate the staff about medication abuse, they wont change until they want to change. They might want to change if they are facing a regular drug screen at work, as a condition of employment. Your people are at a much higher risk of abuse, so act like it and reassure your community.

This is so simple, why am I taking time to tell you?

Right, because you have more important things to do and have missed the basics.

I feel badly for the people that use/abuse meds to soften the impact of BS and tough work situations, because epmc's failures are probably going to make their problem even bigger.

Since: Jan 13

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#7
Jun 17, 2013
 
My late partner was a nurse and an addict, before being struck off the register. As far as I know quality of patient care never suffered from him because he was used to any disabling effects by being a long-term user. As one poster has already pointed out, why is it that nurses are get more of the attention focus than other aspects of the profession. For example, the drug using/alcoholic family doctor is almost a cliche. From a personal viewpoint, I'd say having a license revoked at once is not always an answer. I believe help ought to be offered and the drug abuser should remain (if at all possible) within the workplace. After my late partner was struck off he turned to prostitution, and, as I've said, his quality of patient care never came into question. Sure these jobs are stressful, as are many, access to meds is not entirely relevant either because if people want to get hold of drugs (prescription or non-prescription) they will.
Old Nurse

Denver, CO

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#8
Jun 17, 2013
 

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Nurses are no more likely to abuse alcohol or illicit drugs or prescription medications than the general population. In fact, the incidence of drug abuse is the same percentage for both groups, around 13%.

The reason nurses are being targeted here is that you see them as an easy target and a distraction from what the true issues are at EPMC. There is undoubtedly a problem with employees being intimidated and feeling insecure every day they come to work here, by the upper management, which is not necessarily direct managers. This system is a mess, more than many other organizations, and there has been no change after so many of our peers have departed for whatever reason. The current issues are bringing to light some critical issues that may topple the hospital and cause a takeover or massive reorganization, yet the players in this story all think that they will be the one to solve the problem, and then they're gone.

About addiction and abuse, take a look in your own mirror! When was the last time you had too many drinks, or took that leftover pain prescription because it helped you sleep? Addiction is a steep cliff that we all think we can stand next to and never fall over! It's not just nurses, so lighten up on the critical judgements.

Test yourself: Could you honestly tell your spouse or significant other the reason you used medications or alcohol to escape a problem or feel better recently? Only you know the truth, and if you can't tell them, you're lying to yourself about how serious your problem is, and you should talk to them honestly before it's too late- and your life falls apart- and you get nitpicked in a small town newspaper forum- or worse, you silently fall off the cliff by yourself and can't ever climb back up. Talk to someone.

- and I agree with above: Stop throwing stones.
Yes we can

Estes Park, CO

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#9
Jun 17, 2013
 

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Obviously there are lots of people who don't drink alcohol and are presciption medicine free and don't use illicit drugs or hallucinogens, and we are all perfectly comfortable "throwing stones". Ask yourself, if you were claiming the same thing about people who shoot other people in crowded theaters, and asked "haven't you all done that at one time in your life, or at least taken a shot at another human with a gun?" whether or not this would be an effective argument. Stop trying to lump in normal human beings, those of us with real jobs and no mental problems, with the stoners and losers who constantly post on this forum and try to defend nurses who steal medications and are found passed out on the floor.
chill

Denver, CO

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#10
Jun 18, 2013
 

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Right, never have tried anything and above all others. One guy was perfect, and he doesn't live in Estes Park! Sorry you were offended by post above, but it's true.
chill

Denver, CO

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#11
Jun 18, 2013
 
..and thoughtfully written.
chill

United States

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#12
Jun 19, 2013
 
I am going to modify what I just said: There are things like courts and judges and police officers that have to make decisions of right and wrong, even if they are not perfect. If we allow murderers to get off because we once killed a bug, this is insanity. I apologize for my stupidity.
I thought so

Estes Park, CO

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#13
Jun 20, 2013
 
This chill person was talking out three sides of their mouth. Unquestionably they were trying to take a stance that was unsupportable. Thanks for apologizing.
chill

Denver, CO

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#14
Jun 21, 2013
 
Oh man, did I mis-speak? Yes. I say, prosecute the criminal offender. I also say take a look at yourself and nip a problem in the bud, before you are a passing out employee. Check it out: Everyone change their name to 'chill'. That will be fun!
chili

United States

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#15
Jun 21, 2013
 
t-boz, and left eye. These three changed the face of women's hip hop for ever - Don't go chasin' waterfalls............

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