1. The American Nurses Association suggests high level of drug addiction among nursing staff. The incidence is particularly high in specialties like anesthesia, critical care, oncology and psychiatry. The New York Nurses Association’s model policy states:
a. Employers have an ethical obligation and most have a legal mandate to report an impaired nurse to the appropriate legal and regulatory authority in order to safeguard consumers.
b. Nurses have an obligation to address impairment of a colleague.
These policy are adopted by the nursing association of many states in US. (Springhouse., 2004)
2. Health care professional have an obligation to maintain a drug abuse free workplace. All members of health care, must work as a team to provide patients with a safe and secure care. Illegal practices can affect the competence of staff and can lead the whole team to embarrassing situations. By not reporting a personal who abuses drugs, we ignore and thus promote the crime to happen. My change to this policy would be, to give an initial warning and opportunity to the nurse to give up addiction. Intense emotional demands and work stress often leads nurses to abuse drugs. Counselling and monitoring can help to reduce substance abuse among health care professional. Addiction must be considered as an illness that requires treatment. Cancelling of license and expulsion from job should only be the last resort to handle such issues. All nurses have a ethical obligation to report behavior that creates suspicion of drug addiction. These reports should be handled confidentially and action needs to be taken only after sufficient proof is obtained.
3. Four new references related to the topic are:
i. Cares, A., Pace, E., Denious, J., & Crane, L. (2014). Substance Use and Mental Illness Among Nurses: Workplace Warning Signs and Barriers to Seeking Assistance. Substance Abuse, 36(1), 59-66. doi:10.1080/08897077.2014.933725
ii. Kaye, A., Vadivelu, N., & Urman, R.(2015). Substance abuse. NewYork: Springer Science
iii. Porath-Waller, A., Brown, J., & Frigon, A. (2015). Perceptions among Alberta Healthcare Professionals of Prescription Drug Misuse. Ottawa: Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse.
iv. Ti, L., Buxton, J., Harrison, S., Dobrer, S., Montaner, J., Wood, E., & Kerr, T. (2015). Willingness to access an in-hospital supervised injection facility among hospitalized people who use illicit drugs. Journal of Hospital Medicine, 10(5), 301-306. doi:10.1002/jhm.2344.
References to work cited
1. Springhouse.,. (2004). Nurse's Legal Handbook. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer Health.