Hospital drug thefts to get more scrutiny

  • Article by: Brad Schrade , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 21, 2013 - 9:46 PM

Legislation would mandate reporting those who steal to licensing boards.

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YoganaziMar. 22, 13 6:31 AM

Discipline the providers who allow these staff to resign and don't notify the proper licensing boards. These impaired employees go to a new employer and harm more patient's with narcotic diversion.

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edinawaterMar. 22, 13 7:00 AM

Many things involve trade-offs. If you increase reporting you will decrease the number of people seeking treatment. Some people who would have otherwise been treated will instead hide in the shadows and steal from patients to get their fix. Treatment doesn't work 100% of the time so if you allow treatment without reporting some people will steal from patients to get their fix. No matter what is done there will always be people who steal drugs from patients.

As a matter of policy, which approach will have the best results? From the numbers in this article three medical professionals have been caught stealing drugs in recent years while several hundred have sought treatment. Who is to say we have not already found the best balance?

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flakerangerMar. 22, 13 8:30 AM

The theft of narcotics from a facility is NOT an illness. It is a crime. The American with Disabilities Act and attendant case law clearly differentiate the illness of addiction from the any attendant criminal behavior that may support an individual's addiction.

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cootoriginalMar. 22, 1310:43 AM

"“It is not real fond of the direction it’s going … of criminalizing illness rather than trying to deal with it in a confidential way,” said Marshall Shragg, executive director". --The illness isn't being criminalized, but the theft! Besides, sometimes it is not just theft, but patient safety. Replacing the drug with water and causing harm to the patient goes against the tenents of health care. That is the more aggregious transgression here, and has nothing to do with "chemical dependency illness".

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