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Use of Drugs among EMS workers..

Off duty medic caught stealing unathorized medications. Should he :   39 votes

  1. 1.

    • be placed on suspension
      3
    • be fired if found guilty
      26
    • if agreed a re-hab center & then closely monitored on probation
      9
    • none of the above
      1

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Posted · Report post

I read on another forum of a medic that was accused of stealing unauthorized medications.. while not on duty. Do you think he should be discharged immediately, or be offered rehab etc.. I know in my state as a R.N. I have to report even DWI, if I don't my license will be revoked. Then you would have to go through a PEER program where you would be monitored for at least a year, for a DWI.

What if the medic admits taking the medication ?

Do you think EMS should have the same type of programs ?

Be safe,

Ridryder 911

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Posted · Report post

I think suspension until satisfactory completion of a rehab course would be the best. Until they are drug free, they shouldn't be around medications, but I know people can be rehabilitated.

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Posted · Report post

What if the medic admits taking the medication ?

It depends. When did he "admit" it? Before or after he was caught? And by he "admits taking the medication," do you mean he admitted the theft, or simply admitted to using the medication?

Personally, I have as much tolerance for substance abuse as I have for child abuse. Rehab is unreliable for both, and both are crimes of moral turpitude which seriously diminish or entirely shatter my confidence in the employee's reliability and integrity. I've never understood why there is all this special sympathy for substance abusers in the first place, other than a bunch of liberal drivel from the APA and ACLU. In medicine and nursing they are lenient because of the shortage. We have no shortage of EMTs.

Of course, what you do -- or even can do -- about it depends a lot on where you are. In union and civil service systems, you are extremely limited in how you can deal with the situation. But if it is up to me -- and so long as my legal advisors concur -- I am putting the employee on special duty away from patient care pending the legal outcome of his case. If found guilty, then I am firing them. It's not my responsibility to get them out of the pickle they got themselves into, and there are plenty more rookie EMTs out there more than happy to take his spot.

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Posted · Report post

Suspend him, notify the state licensing or certifying board and local prosecutor. If found guilty then fire his sorry butt. I have no sympathy for thieves or addicts. They in no way deserve to be treated with kid gloves or be allowed to be put into a position of responsibility or where they could potentially easily feed their addiction. I don't believe "rehab" works for most people.

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Posted · Report post

There should be no exceptions here. He should be removed from service IF FOUND GUILTY.

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What was the substance that was taken? I'd assume it was a narcotic or other controlled substance? If it is a substance abuse problem, it is a significant issue.

Theft is theft and is just the beginning of a large snowball effect going from bad to worse.

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Posted · Report post

Assuming you're talking about the drug box and not just some band-aids. If that's true, there are only two reasons I can think of for such a thing - either their own use or for sale. Both are deplorable in a medical professional and jeopardize their entire organization.

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If found guilty, you have to get rid of this person. In this situation you run into all sorts of problems regarding the types of crimes involved. Theft, which in itself should be enough to have him fired, and then the issue of "Drugs" although it wasn't clear what type of drugs, but is clear that they were illegal for him to possess. Problems Problems Problems, get rid of his booty before he steals the last Morphine needed for your Old Man, having the "Big One"

Dan

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having dealt with my own issues in the past I say let him have one chance to clean up, suspend until either proven not guilty or succesfully completed rehab. If he messes up again fire him on the spot. For some people a rehab and a fine are enough to scare them out of the substance abuse others it will have to have a heavier consequence, such as a job loss and revocation of certificates and licensures as well as jail time.

and I agree that for some people no matter what you do to them to get them to learn will not help, the only way they will stop substance abuse is by ending their life.

-Alco

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Also on a side note I have firend who is an EMTB is an alchoholic as well as substance abuser, but until I can find hard evidence to prove the substance abuse theres really nothing for me to report, although said EMTB supposedly used purex to purify the urine during a drug test. Its a tough situation, not exactly sure, but one day eithe she'll end up taking her own life or she'll get caught doing it and lose everything.

-alco

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Posted · Report post

Also on a side note I have firend who is an EMTB is an alchoholic as well as substance abuser, but until I can find hard evidence to prove the substance abuse theres really nothing for me to report, although said EMTB supposedly used purex to purify the urine during a drug test. Its a tough situation, not exactly sure, but one day eithe she'll end up taking her own life or she'll get caught doing it and lose everything.

-alco

By the way how is your "friend" doing with her ETOH abuse issues?

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I had a coworker caught using Valium, Morphine, and Versed from the narc bags. He was falsifying administration records and tampering with the vials so it would either look like an accident or just routine administration of the medications. He was actually caught stoned on duty.

He was offered rehab for the drugs, but fired for the falsification of records. I completely agree with the punishment. Its inhuman for me to not support him getting better, even though I couldn't stand the guy in general. But his abusing put me in a bad spot several times... once I had to try to convince the department's pharmacy that I really had no idea why 5 of my 5 vials of Valium were open at the beginning of my shift.

Devin

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Posted · Report post

Definately suspened and if found guilty..yeah fire the person..sounds tough, but theres no place for thiefs in our profession. we got enough to deal with, besides someone stealing.

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Check your state laws- for us, if he enters a guilty plea-his service has to get a waiver for him to be around controlled substances. Unfortunately this may be out of the hands of an employer. Now drug court is for users, not dealers or manufacturers. Depending on the charge, you might have DEA and federal drug laws and at least, your state agency that has oversight of controlled substance.

It sounds good to have rehab and all that, but that is a deal that attorneys usually try to make.

This is a widespread problem. It's not just about addiction, it's about ethics and value systems.

You might be amazed how many use, steal, divert, empty and replace with saline depriving patients of needed medications, use rig stocks for personal use. We have a meth problem too. Number one per capita for labs.

It's not as easy as a four question survey

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