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Old 03-27-2009, 09:39 AM
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Default Nurse accused of siphoning dying woman's morphine

Thu Mar 26, 7:42 pm ET
ANN ARBOR, Mich. ? Prosecutors have charged a nurse with stealing morphine by using a syringe to siphon the narcotic painkiller from the bedside of a dying woman.
A warrant issued by Washtenaw County authorities said Esther Najer, 48, stole morphine four times on Sept. 6 from the room of meningitis patient LaKrisha Dobbins, who died later that day. Najer, of Willis, was not immediately arraigned on the four counts of larceny.
Najer entered Dobbins' room at the University of Michigan hospital and appeared to be checking whether the patient's intravenous drip was working, said Dobbins' mother, Janette Birton of Ypsilanti.
Dobbins' family said they were concerned that a lack of morphine may have caused suffering.
"It's just devastating and compounds the grief," said Birton, who reported her suspicions to relatives and hospital officials.
University police Lt. Robert Neumann said detectives spent months investigating the complaint.
Najer last worked at the hospital on Sept. 7, hospital officials said. They would not disclose her current job status but said they cooperating with investigators.
"It is important to note that even if medication is diverted from an intravenous bag that feeds into an automatic medication pump, the patient will still receive the full intended dose of medication because the intravenous bag is replaced each time it runs out," the University of Michigan Health Systems said in a statement. "The bag might be replaced more frequently than originally intended, but the patient will receive the full intended dose of medication."
If convicted, Najer faces up to four years in prison for each charge. Najer did not have a listed telephone number. Court records didn't indicate she had a lawyer.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090326/...wh6cCCx2xvzwcF
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Old 03-27-2009, 10:00 AM
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If it was a syringe driver, it would be hard to access unless it was checked by two nurses? Most of these lines don't have IV access below the syringe leading to the patient.

And to access it four times in one day, how???
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Old 03-27-2009, 11:46 AM
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We had a nurse diverting meds from a PCA. She took a syringe and went up underneath went through the stopper and withdrew the morphine and then replaced it with 0.9% saline. The PCA pumps we have now do not have that stopper and there are no ports, as you say Jay, below the pump to the hub so it would be virtually impossible to steal the med barring entering the tubing with a needle.

This particular nurse did this on nights while the patient was sleeping. One patient had a person staying with them who the nurse believed was sleeping but she watched the whole thing and reported it.
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Old 03-27-2009, 01:18 PM
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Drug addicts are everywhere.
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Old 03-27-2009, 05:57 PM
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We actually had a nurse juts fired for diverting meds out of the sharps containers. The nurses on our unit would waste the med by dropping it in the sharps bin. So for example, Ativan is stocked 2mg/ml IV. We have alot of orders for Ativan 0.5mg IV. We would draw up what we needed and just toss in the sharp bins. Even the PCA bags once we took them down. We have a new company manufacturing the bags and once spiked, you cannot pull off to waste. We would just toss them, not thinking. Until now...

He was watching us and the rummaging the sharp bins off of what we arent wasting. We are now wasting everything, even down to the oral meds down the drain. If the tap water tastes a lil funny we know why!! LOL
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Old 03-27-2009, 06:16 PM
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:th_2i8hsav: Opps! Should have checked to see if visitor was really sleeping.

Ok seriously, that's low. Stealing pain meds from someone dying. Nurse needs help ( mentally ). Shame. Shame. Shame.
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Old 03-27-2009, 11:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tennessee Night Nurse View Post
Drug addicts are everywhere.
Yep, unfortunately

Quote:
Originally Posted by JennaRN1006 View Post
We actually had a nurse juts fired for diverting meds out of the sharps containers. The nurses on our unit would waste the med by dropping it in the sharps bin. So for example, Ativan is stocked 2mg/ml IV. We have alot of orders for Ativan 0.5mg IV. We would draw up what we needed and just toss in the sharp bins.
Ewww...
But I guess, if you want something like that, you'll do anything. Wonder how many needlestick biohazard injuries the nurse sustained?
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Old 03-28-2009, 09:29 AM
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We have the kind that lock when you insert something but I still squirt the extra in the sink or the garbage. You never know what happens to those containers when the company that supplies them comes to change them out.
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Old 03-28-2009, 03:43 PM
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This brings up many emotions for me.
I am sad that this RN felt she needed to do that for her habit.
Sad because she desperately needs help and sad how this can affect all of us nurses.
Sad that the patients suffer through no fault of their own. I guess the good thing here that it was an IV and the medication was still getting administered correctly. I gather the RN was just using syringe and needle to get it out of the actual bag!
Desperate people will do desperate things and invent ways to get their fix.
I did not think that anything was meant to be disposed of down the sink anymore. I have the list here of several meds that are permitted to be flushed but most should now go into grounds or kitty litter.
We waste tabs by crushing them, mixing in water and letting kitty litter soak it up.
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Old 03-29-2009, 01:34 PM
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Anytime you divert medication from a dying patient there is something definately wrong with you....I can't believe anyone would do this but when you have a habit you will do anything. One time we had a nurse that would withdraw medication from our demerol and morphine syringes and then fill them back with saline. She would bring in her own syringes to take the meds home so that our needle and syringe count wouldn't be used a lot and people would get suspicious because we don't use a lot of narcotics at our place. But if you had a kidney stone and the nurse had stolen the morphine out of the syringe and you were given saline....omg....th_1204AE110. I don't know if these people need to be proscecuted but I think that they need help.

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