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 Post subject: Nurse on Suboxone
PostPosted: Fri Jan 01, 2010 4:22 am 
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Suboxone has saved my life. The problem is that I am finding I may have to give up my beloved career to save my life. I am an RN in Pennsylvania. I have never been in trouble for diverting medications, I have never been disciplined for anything related to my drug use. I made the decision to start suboxone before it got to that point. More because of boredom than anything else, I started to research the topic of nurses on suboxone. I never dreamed that it would be an issue. I am finding conflicting information on the internet. Can I or can I not be on suboxone and work as a nurse? Is it a "don't ask, don't tell" type of situation?? Would they test me for suboxone on a random drug screen, which we are subject to periodically? I have not been approached by my employer on suspicion of drug use or suboxone use. Should I just continue and hope the issue does not come up. I have no desire to come off. I planned on being on maintenance for as long as possible. It works that well for me. I have no cravings, no desire to use narcotics, I am calm and happy, sleeping well at night for the first time in years, seeing a psychiatrist and attending individual therapy...all things that are positive for me, rather than self-destructive. I was taking upwards of 20-30 vicodin a day. Forget the hydrocodone let's talk about what the acetamenophin was doing to me. Now I hear that this life saving drug may prohibit me from practicing as a nurse... That's crazy to me.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 01, 2010 7:15 pm 
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I don't know the laws in PA for that, even though I live there, but from what I read on here it is a touchy situation. Someone else has personal experience about that and I hope they give you a reply. I presume they have some sort of info on that topic. I will do a google for you....if I come up with anything worthwhile, I will post back. Good luck!!

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"Have no fear of perfection - you'll never reach it." ---Salvador Dali


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 02, 2010 1:18 am 
Hi Kelwolf and welcome to the forum! I'm pretty sure I'm the member that BigRed referenced above and that Lathedude mentioned in his reply to your other post. I read your posts earlier today and rather than replying off the cuff, I've just kind of been thoughtful about your situation all day.
I was a Registered Nurse for over 18 years. My entire career was spent in a highly specialized area of nursing. The majority of my work was in a high stress, high volume critical care area of a major city hospital. I was well respected both professionally and personally.
If you're interested in more of the story, you can search the forum for some of my earlier posts or PM and I'll tell you more. But long and short of it goes like this....After a few years of legitimate opiate prescriptions leading to dependence, then abuse and addiction, I began to divert narcotics from the workplace. I was eventually caught and turned myself in to my state Board of Nursing. I was accepted into the Peer Assistance Program in an effort to keep my license. The mandates of the Program were very extensive. Their requirement was for complete abstinence-based recovery, daily calls for random drug screens, extensive and expensive Intensive Outpatient Treatment, Aftercare, multiple 12 step meetings weekly and a nurse support meeting weekly, lots of paperwork, etc. All of this to continue for a minimum of two years and a maximum of five years. I tried recovery their way for about 8 months. During that time I was able to sustain complete abstinence (and I mean nothing allowed other than plain Tylenol or Advil or Aleve) for brief periods of time, made 90 days at one point. I'm gonna be completely honest here, nothing to be gained any more by being untruthful...I would sneak some hydrocodone here and there right after submitting a clean drug test with the thought that I probably wouldn't be called again to test soon enough to be "dirty". I knew I wouldn't get away with it forever. I was just miserable....PAWS wouldn't let me breathe! I just could not do it. Ultimately I decided to voluntarily withdraw from Peer and surrender my license. I had never gone back to work after my initial crash and burn. Didn't know if I'd ever be able to return to work without constant fear of relapse. I couldn't see myself wanting to live if I had to live my life that way (the Peer Assistance Program's way) So I quit...before I ended up failing anyway.
Shortly after quitting Peer, I found that I was ramping back up on the opiates, back to taking 3-6 hydro 10's or so a day for a couple of weeks....hating that I was again lying, manipulating, chasing pills. Enter Suboxone. I had heard a little bit about it while going through treatment, but it was not offered to us nurses....it was not allowed. Since I no longer had my license to worry about, I found a Sub doctor and started getting my life back. That was six months ago. I cannot tell you how much my life has improved! I'm a big believer in Suboxone!
On to your questions: I do not live in your state and maybe your state is more progressive than mine when it comes to such issues. I hope so for your sake. What you need to do is research your states Nurse Practice Act. The one in my state says that nurses cannot practice if taking any mind or mood altering drug. Suboxone (for some stupid reason) falls definitively into that category. I'm sure it's because it's description involves the word "opiate"! If you're unfortunate enough to find yourself in the shoes I was in....trying to do recovery through a Peer Assistance Program, Suboxone is an absolute NO-GO. We weren't even allowed to take Benedryl - I kid you not! More likely than not, you are practicing against your Nurse Practice Act by using Suboxone and working. It's bullcrap, I know, but I'm just telling what I believe to be the truth.
Another issue is that you are under the care of medical professionals. They not only have the right but actually have a duty to report you to your State Board of Nursing if they feel you might be putting patients at risk by working as a nurse while being an addict. Again, in some ways it's bullcrap, but I know of some nurses who this was done to.
As far as self-reporting: After everything I went through, I could not in good conscience recommend you do this even though technically it would be the "right thing to do". You know yourself, and I pray to God that if you honestly feel you are at risk for relapse or that you are impaired in any way in caring for your patients, you'll do the right thing and get out of nursing. My belief and experience is that Suboxone is NOT mind or mood altering or I would be strongly telling you to self report or at the very least get out of patient care immediately.
I am not an expert, not a doctor, not a lawyer....nothing I have said is gospel truth. It is just what I have learned through my own experiences and the experiences of others.
I felt that I had to give up nursing. It hurt. It still hurts bad! I loved it. I was good at it. I'm very sad that I had to let it go. It hurts my heart...my soul...my ego....my credibility...my bank balance....on and on...
However, I want to live. I want and need to have my happiness back. I can be alive and happy without being a nurse. At the time I made the decision to surrender my license I felt there was no other way. Would I do it all the same again? I don't know. Maybe I would have pursued and fought to be allowed to be on Suboxone, but at that point the Program was so rigid and so persecutorial that I didn't feel I had a chance. Not to mention the fact that I was just so tired.
Maybe "don't ask, don't tell" will work out for you. Suboxone probably will not show up in the typical random drug screens they do at the workplace, but there is no guarantee. And if that becomes an issue, you will have some 'splainin' to do.
Above all, I wish you the best. I'm glad you found Suboxone before you lost it all like I did. It's been the most painful experience of my life (and I've been through some stuff!)
Your life, your sobriety is the most important thing here. Everything else is secondary. It sounds like Suboxone is what you need to stay off the destructive path of opiate addiction, so stick with it and keep moving forward. Everything else will have a way of working out! Let us know you've gotten our replies and let us know if there is anything else we can do for you. Hope this has helped clarify a few things for you.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:33 pm 
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Yes I was referring you you setmefree! I know I remembered you saying you were a RN. I love the pic you have now by the way!! I love the snow...

Also, great info to kelwolf!



kelwolf

here are a couple of links to the PA nurse practice act. I do not know if there are what setmefree is talking about or if they will be of any help. I hope they are though!

PA Registered Nurse Practice Act

PA Licensed Practical Nurse Act

That was just from a quick google of PA nurse practice act

Good Luck

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"The past is finished. There is nothing to be gained by going over it. Whatever it gave us in the experiences it brought us was something we had to know."----Rebecca Beard

"Have no fear of perfection - you'll never reach it." ---Salvador Dali


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 03, 2010 3:08 am 
Thanks BigRed! those would be the links I would have expected her/him to easily find if he/she did a google search. He/She may in fact already have read through them and hence the concerns he/she's now feeling. I hope he/she comes back. Hope I haven't scared her off by what happened to me. But I sure wish someone had told me all this crap before I ended up in the mess I was in, right?


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 03, 2010 3:49 pm 
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Setmefree...

I too hope he/she: comes back to let us know what is going on, if he/she found any info that was of use, and I hope that he/she read your post. I think by sharing your experience is one of the best things you could have done. You know first hand exactly what a situation like his/hers is about.




setmefree wrote:
But I sure wish someone had told me all this crap before I ended up in the mess I was in, right?


I am sure that we all wished someone could have gave us some insight on an issue that we went through or are going through. I am sure that if someone could have let you in on some important info about your career and the situation you went through, you could have possibly avoided many of the bad events that you went through (I sure wish I had someone to fill me in 'back in the day'!). Even now, especially with this forum, I know I look foward to any information I can gather from a reliable source about a situation or an issue that I need help with. Other's opinions can help us greatly, or at least open our eyes to a different point of view.

In my opinion, kelwolf2003 is blessed to have you here to help with his/her situation.


kelwolf
setmefree is a great help, you should value her advice/insight. Please let us know how you are making out, or if we were of any help...if not, how else can we help ya......take care! Good Luck!!!

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"The past is finished. There is nothing to be gained by going over it. Whatever it gave us in the experiences it brought us was something we had to know."----Rebecca Beard

"Have no fear of perfection - you'll never reach it." ---Salvador Dali


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 08, 2010 3:47 pm 
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I was wondering if anyone had any incite on what goes on in the drug evaluation for Profession Health Monitor in PA? What happens if they deem you not an addict, just made a bad decision and failed a drug test. Anyone know if they will force you into the program b/c of a failed drug test or if they will close the case if your not deemed an addict? Thanks in advanced for any advice.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 5:55 pm 
LPN6845, I do not have any knowledge regarding your state's board of nursing or their "Profession Health Monitor" as you referred to it. If by "Profession Health Monitor" you are talking about a branch of the BON which is an 'alternative to discipline' type program for nurses who have either been caught taking drugs from an employer or failed a drug test or gotten a DUI or the like, then I might be able to help you a little bit.
Again I know nothing about how things are done in your state, but my experience in my state goes something like this: You are required to have a full workup by a clinician of the BON's choosing for chemical dependency. That clinician makes recommendations to the BON about what type of treatment you need. In many instances it involves outpatient treatment, etc. However, I know a few people who were NOT diagnosed as needing ANY treatment of ANY kind (for example, a DUI and the person was NOT determined to be an alcoholic). Those people were not required to get any formal treatment but were still required to enter and complete the Peer Assistance Program (that's what they call it in my state). There are a lot of requirements involved and these programs typically take 2-5 years of meeting all stipulations before you can 'graduate.' These programs allow RNs and LPNs basically to continue working, keep their license and have nothing permanent on their record after completing the program.
I am not a lawyer and I know nothing about your state requirements. As far as I know, no matter what state you're in, you are entitled to legal representation on these matters. So if you are concerned about how things are being handled you should consider consulting with an attorney who specializes in dealing with Nursing Boards. Things can get pretty complicated pretty fast when you're in hot water with the BON. Trust me, I know! PM me or post again if you want to tell me more about what has happened and I'll help you any way I can.


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 Post subject: Re: Nurse on Suboxone
PostPosted: Thu Mar 04, 2010 4:03 am 
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kelwolf2003 wrote:
Suboxone has saved my life. The problem is that I am finding I may have to give up my beloved career to save my life. I am an RN in Pennsylvania. I have never been in trouble for diverting medications, I have never been disciplined for anything related to my drug use. I made the decision to start suboxone before it got to that point. More because of boredom than anything else, I started to research the topic of nurses on suboxone. I never dreamed that it would be an issue. I am finding conflicting information on the internet. Can I or can I not be on suboxone and work as a nurse? Is it a "don't ask, don't tell" type of situation?? Would they test me for suboxone on a random drug screen, which we are subject to periodically? I have not been approached by my employer on suspicion of drug use or suboxone use. Should I just continue and hope the issue does not come up. I have no desire to come off. I planned on being on maintenance for as long as possible. It works that well for me. I have no cravings, no desire to use narcotics, I am calm and happy, sleeping well at night for the first time in years, seeing a psychiatrist and attending individual therapy...all things that are positive for me, rather than self-destructive. I was taking upwards of 20-30 vicodin a day. Forget the hydrocodone let's talk about what the acetamenophin was doing to me. Now I hear that this life saving drug may prohibit me from practicing as a nurse... That's crazy to me.

My situation is almost identical to the one above, Im an RN never been in trouble with diversion, or discipline with my license etc. Ive been on suboxone for 2 years and ive been able to keep it a secret so I wont lose my job...my question is about the doctors. Can they refuse to prescribe suboxone because you are an RN? I just moved to another state, and I have to find a local physician to prescribe my medicine. Im worried now that I will get stuck in another state with no doc and no meds?? Any advice would be appreciated. THanks.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 07, 2010 5:58 pm 
Hi baylee! I'm glad you joined the forum and I hope you'll participate fully. We have a nice support community here and would love to have your contributions!
Well, I bet you have read this whole thread, so you know a bit about my history. I sure hope you know how fortunate you are that you found out about Suboxone and got into treatment before things got much worse for you. You don't know what I would give to have been so fortunate!
I don't think you'll have any trouble regarding finding a new doctor to prescribe your Suboxone. As I mentioned in one of my replies above, my concern would be the remote possibility that a doctor might feel obligated to report you to the state board of nursing. Emphasize the word "remote." But a possibility nonetheless. There was a gal in the Peer Assistance Program I was in who was there because one of her healthcare providers turned her in. This woman wasn't even practicing as a nurse at the time either!! She was staying home with her kids at the time and was not employed at all. She was, however, still a Registered Nurse in my state. She swears she had never diverted drugs and had never worked while impaired, been in any trouble when she worked before, nothing. She had not been working for about a year when she was contacted by the Board and confronted about her addiction to opiates. She had been reported by one of her doctors apparently! So....it can happen! That would be my biggest worry if I were you. Well, my biggest worry other than returning to active addiction!!
If I were you, I just wouldn't mention the fact that I was a nurse when I found a doctor. I sure wouldn't. I can't think of any reason why that information would be necessary anyway. That's my opinion anyway. Why risk it? You need to stay on Suboxone and you'd probably like to avoid any action against your license. So why lose any sleep over any of this? Just don't say anything about your profession.
That's just me. I'm not a doctor or a lawyer and I'm not even a nurse anymore. You might want to look up your nurse practice act or call someone at the board and ask if there is a rule about bupe. Maybe it's not a problem where you live. I kind of doubt it though. But again, just me.
Let us know what you decide to do and how everything goes. When you have time, tell us some more about yourself!


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2010 8:23 am 
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thanks setmefree for your reply. Im glad I found this forum, its nice to know there are other people out there that understand what Im going through! I scheduled an appointment with a new sub doctor in my area. She sounded very nice and I hope to establish a good relationship with her. I still dont know what Im going to do about the whole nursing issue...Im really scared that I could get reported to the BON if i tell the truth, and on the other hand I hate to lie about the situation, not a good way to start off with a new doc. But...if thats what it takes to keep my license then so be it. It just really, really sucks that RNs cant be on this medication. If people knew more about it, and realized that we get no high while taking this medication, it would be a different story. I have no doubt in my mind that nurses treated with suboxone have a lower relapse rate then those who aren't. I feel the same way, I love my job and I love being a nurse...but if I had to chose one or the other, nursing would be a thing of the past....and it really shouldnt be that way! If anyone else has any experiences with sub docs and nursing boards please post!! Im interested to know how the doctors view the situation. Hope everyone is having a good week! :D


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2010 5:24 pm 
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I'm really excited to have found this forum. It has provided me with so much information and experiences of people who have or are currently taking Suboxone. I have been taking narcotics for about 5 years now due to lower back and leg pain. I am under the care of a pain management physician. I have received 7 epidural steroid injections, one microdiscectomy and of course I have tried almost every narcotic under the sun. I don't know if this is just an excuse for me to justify my increasing intake of my DOC but it seemed that my body would build up a tolerance very quickly after only a few weeks on one medication so that eventually I was taking 2-3 pills to get the same pain relief as I did in the beginning. Eventually I ended up taking approximately 4-5 pills at a time. During all of this I have been practicing as a registered nurse in the state of Georgia. Almost all of my medication use was during my off time and I only took my medication during work hours if I was having intolerable pain. I have never taken any of my patients meds or stolen any and have made sure that all narcotics that I deliver to patients are documented and signed by the patient or patient caregiver. However last month my supervisor took me aside and asked me if I was drugged and stated that my speech was slurred and I seemed "out of it". I had not had any medication that day but I had had it the night before and had not been sleeping well the past few nights. I told her that I had not had anything since the night before but I knew that she would be watching me closely. Then about a week and a half ago I had finally decided to start the Suboxone therapy because I was tired of having to depend on a pill that seemed to be running my life. If I ran out early, which I often did, I would be frantic to find some and usually ended up getting my Mom to help me out since she is with pain management as well and I always hated asking her. I researched this treatment carefully and found an MD who prescribed it. The day after I started on Suboxone, I was taking 4mg twice daily, I had a team meeting at work and for some reason I felt like I was completely drugged. I had not had any narcotics since 48 hours before so I assumed that it was the Suboxone and that it would take a bit for my body to adjust to it. Enter my supervisor who after the meeting practically dragged me to the lab to provide a urine specimen. She stated that I looked very drugged and was slurring my words and that she did not feel comfortable not doing a drug screen. I have been off on leave for a week and a half and the drug screen results finally came back today. They showed opiates in my system at 10 times what a normal person would take. I can't understand why the results are so skewed since I had had no narcotics 48 hours prior to the test, just the Suboxone. Can the Suboxone affect a urine drug screen this much or even at all? Now I face losing my job and possibly my license, which of course terrifies me. I have been a nurse for 16 years and love what I do. I don't know what I would do if something like this happens. I have a child to support. Sorry, whining...I'm just so scared. I'm hoping that they will at least do some kind of treatement thing and let me stay on Suboxone therapy since it has helped me so much. I don't know what I would have done without it! I live in Georgia and I checked on the nurse practice act for my state but I really can't make heads or tails of it. It doesn't say anything specific about this type of treatment so I guess I have to just wait and see what they are going to do at my current employer. Sorry for such a long post and thanks so much for everyone's experiences on here. You guys are great and I'm so glad that I found you. I'll post more when i find out what's happening at work. Thanks!


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2010 6:05 pm 
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Welcome neonurse and welcome,
I'm so sorry about your current situation. There's not a lot of concrete info I can provide you with but I wanted to at least say welcome, offer my support, and give you what little info I can.

That said, it is my understanding that suboxone will not show up in a drug test unless they specifically test for it. However, I have no idea how long full agonists stay in your body. You might be able to do a quick Google search to find some more info on that. And I'm sure others will chime in.

As for the suboxone making you a bit loopy, well, yes it can do that for the first few days, but it WILL go away. It really sucks that it all came out the way it did. Just when you started on your recovery. I understand why you would be afraid. Most employers have some way to allow people like us to stay on the job in a recovery program of some sort. And there's at least one other nurse on this forum; hopefully you'll get the benefit of her personal experiences as well.

I really hope this works out for you. Again, welcome to the forum - I'm sorry it's under these circumstances, but we're glad to have you here.

Keep us posted on how you're doing.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2010 7:54 pm 
Neonurse, Oh brother......I feel for what you're going through! What timing? You just made the decision to acknowledge you were in trouble with your pain meds and get help and now this!! Unbelievable!
First of all.....You've done nothing illegal. You've taken only meds that were prescribed to you and you can prove it. I would think long and hard before I'd divelge anything about having taken narcotics during your at-work hours. The institution I worked for as well as my state's BON policy was (I believe) no narcotics within the 24 hours prior to working and/or during work hours. Surely there is a policy along those lines where you work. I would keep looking until you find it. Sometimes the policies are rather vague, but I still bet you are getting a pretty good idea that you could be in hot water. Again, you have not done anything illegal. But you may have done something against policy or against the Nurse Practice Act. It would probably not be dishonest to plead 'ignorance.' Actually, scratch that.....Don't plead anything at this point. You need to be given a copy or at least told what your drug screen showed. I don't really get the whole "10 times more than a normal person would take" business. Obviously you've required pain meds for some time now, so you have a high tolerance.....all documented I would imagine, by your doctor.
If ever I heard of a situation that called for an attorney, it is your's. You've got a problem no matter how you look at it. Whether you're on Suboxone for opiate addiction or for pain management, in the eyes of most BONs, you're not permitted to work. In the few states I've heard of (I haven't heard anything about Georgia) those on buprenorphine are in Peer Assistance Programs and under the care of the BON's Addictionologist of choice, being monitored very closely. I have a feeling you're at the start of a long journey with the BON. Please contact an attorney who specializes in licensing boards. It may cost some cash initially but may save you a bundle in the long run.
Regardless of those issues....Congratulations for getting help and welcome to this forum. You have to keep it all in perspective. Treating your addiction and taking care of yourself has to come first. If indeed you have been impaired on the job, you need to take the necessary time off to get things under control. If you end up in an alternative to discipline program for impaired nurses, everything may turn out just fine. If you're the sole support for yourself and your child, you may not have much choice but to go through it and do as they require. Many nurses have made it through and say it's the best thing that could have happened to them.
Hang in there and resist the urge to say anything to anyone associated with work or the BON until you've talked to a lawyer. Feel free to PM me if you'd like.
BEEN THERE......DONE THAT!


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2010 8:34 pm 
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neonurse,

So sorry to hear of your predicament - my prayers are with you!

setmefree is right on, as always :D - Consult with an attorney who has experience with licensing boards, ASAP! I know a few medical professionals (one a nurse) who live here in NY, and they have faced similar issues. NY is pretty stringent when it comes to disciplining medical professionals, but they sought legal counsel immediately. After a long road of proving their recovery to the powers that be, they are still doing what they love - practicing & caring for patients.

Best of luck to you, and remember - your strength will get you through the trying times that might be ahead, and you will come out of this wiser & stronger than ever!

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2010 9:38 pm 
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Thanks so much, everyone, for your reponses to my post. It's so great to hear from people who have been where I am now and it's so nice to have support, especially starting this new med. I had actually considered getting an attorney which I will probably do tomorrow. I have been googling trying to find out some information about the board in Georgia but I haven't really found a lot to help me out. In regards to the urine drug screen that I did for my employer I too was a little confused about the "10 times more than normal" comment myself. I mean is that for someone who rarely takes narcotics or for someone who has been taking them daily for the last five years? I'm going to request a copy of those results and compare them to the ones I did for my new Sub. doc and my pain clinic, all done within the same time frame. I am terrified about the whole issue and I would do whatever they asked me to do in order to keep my job and especially my license! I'll go through whatever program is necessary. I guess the waiting is what really drives me crazy. I wish they would just let me know what I need to do and let me get on with it instead of making me wait. I do feel better now that I've received responses from you guys. Thanks so much for your support! I will keep updating my posts to let you know what's happening. Everyone have a great night!


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 27, 2010 11:15 am 
neonurse -I just wanted to add my support. The truth of the matter is that you were taking a legally prescribed drug form your physician in a proper manner. You were not doing anything unethical. I hope the truth in this matter will help you and not be twisted against you.
About the drug screen, I can't help but wonder if they are using a more sophisticated test than the standard, and it detected bupe as an opiate. If that's the case it would be at a very high level because 0.3mg of bupe = 10mg morphine. Maybe the Dr. J will comment on this - he recently included somthing in his blog about how high the maintenence dose of bupe is compared to pain management doses. If you find out anything about the drug test please let us know as it could affect any of us seeking employment.

I know it took me a few days to adjust to being on Sub and I think that's the case for most people. It's a shame they jumped on you as you were going through the adjustment. Another few days and you would have been feeling normal. I'm sorry for all you're going through. You sound like an honest person who is just trying to do what is best for yourself. I pray that your employer and the BON will do the right thing by you. If you get a chance, read Dr. Junig's story. He went through a lot of this stuff himself as an addict/doctor.
You have our support, and I wish you all the best.
Lilly


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2010 11:41 pm 
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Thanks again guys, for your support. I was called into work today and after going through all of my prescription bottles the manager asked me if i had had any reason to take Darvocet. Well, apparently this was the drug that had tested "10 times more than the average limit" and for which I had no prescription bottle for. I had taken some over the weekend that I had in my medicine cabinet and they weren't even in the original bottle. I don't even remember when they were prescribed since I have been prescribed so many things in the last five years and I never throw anything away. The only reason I had taken them was because I was out of hydrocodone and was having some pain. Still, I can't believe that 3 days later I would test at "10 times the average limit". I told my manager that I had had no other pain medicine from Monday to Wednesday, just my Suboxone, but she didn't believe me and I don't think I can blame her due to the evidence she had and the fact that I didn't have the prescription bottle with my name on it. I was terminated effective immediately. Now I'm worried about losing my license and she stated that they would be required to turn it over to the board and that I should wait to hear from them instead of calling them myself. I'm afraid to apply for another nursing job until I find out what's going to happen to my license but I have no experience with anything else and I have a house payment to make and a 12 year old growing boy to feed! I was told that the board would look favorably on me if I voluntarily started an inpatient or outpatient program on my own and didn't wait for them to tell me what to do. I don't even know where to begin with that. Now I won't have insurance and not much money so how am I supposed to pay for treatment? Please forgive me if I seem like I'm whining since I know many of you have probably been in worse situations than this, but I'm not sure where to begin. If anyone has any suggestions or ideas I would be so grateful to hear them!


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2010 11:53 pm 
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OMG, I am SO sorry, neonurse. I can't believe they fired you on the spot. Some positive reinforcement for having started treatment - it must feel like that. How are you doing with all this? And no you're not whining, this is a rotten situation you're in.

As for starting treatment, I'd start looking in your area at what's available. Have you spoken to your suboxone doctor about this? So your insurance will be effective through, what, the end of May? If I were you I'd try to come up with the money to pay for Cobra so you can get some treatment. I think it's probably a good idea to get started on something on your own. I'm just curious, what does your suboxone doc require? Any meetings or counseling? You're already under the treatment of a doctor and on suboxone, maybe going to meetings and therapy will be sufficient instead of an in-patient program.
I'm just throwing out some thoughts.

Again, I'm so sorry this happened to you. It really sucks. Hang in there and vent all you need to - we're here to listen and support.

_________________
-As I have grown older, I've learned that pleasing everyone is impossible, but pissing everyone off is a piece of cake.

-I'm only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 10:52 am 
Neonurse, I am SO sorry. Take a deep breath. I think you should be able to track down that prescription for Darvocet. Last year I had to get all my prescription records because of a dispute over my medical reimbursement account. If you contact the pharmacy(s) you use they should be able to give you the documentation that it was a legal prescription. Also, as Mel said, they can't cut off your insurance right away, so contact human resources and see what the deal is.
Also, are you a Union member? If so, you should be able to get a lawyer through them. Either way, contact the state labor board and find out your rights. You are entitled to a hearing with the labor board as to whether it was a fair firing.
I also agree with Mel that you were ALREADY in treatment with theSub doc.
How are you doing on the Sub? Are you feeling more normal? I know it's a difficult time, but don't forget to put your recovery first. We are pulling for you. Keep us posted.
Lilly


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Dr. Jeffrey Junig, M.D., Ph.D.

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