Every registered nurse in the state received a copy.
In the back, they would list the names of the nurses who had received a disciplinary decision on their license.
I used to read that, seeing if I recognized anyone I knew.
I never did.
But I would look and see just what it took to get dinged by the BRN.
Felonies and/or drug associated activities were about 99.9% of the cases.
It takes pretty serious stuff for the CA BRN to hit your license.
The thing that bothers me most about the Amanda Trujillo case; the thing that makes me furious when I stop and think of everything surrounding it, is this belief that a nurse accused is required to, pardon my bluntness, keep their mouth shut.
Now, let me try and work this out…
Anyone can place a complaint with a Board of Nursing.
This complaint is public record. The fact that you have a complaint on file with the Arizona BON, and the date it is filed is public record.
But…ask the Arizona Board of Nursing for a copy, and you are told you cannot disclose what the complaint says. Can’t fax it. Can’t copy it. Can’t quote it.
Keep your mouth shut.
So, ten months pass, during which the nurse investigator assigned to the case tells you your charting, care plan, nursing diagnosis, and nursing care are above and beyond the call of duty and recommends that your case be dismissed as this is no danger to the public.
The Board says no, and proceeds to investigate/interrogate your entire career up to that point, with a fine tooth comb.
They don’t find anything.
So, this nurse reaches out to an author she admires (Echo Heron) and the story makes the Internet via the nursing blogs and all hell supposedly breaks loose.
Keep your mouth shut!
The Board isn’t happy she is speaking out.
She posts her response to the complaint with the patient information redacted.
Her attorney is mad! She’s a bad nurse! Bad, bad nurse!
Keep your mouth SHUT!
You are accused. We will tell you if you are relevant. We will tell you when and if you may speak.
Stand back and shut up, for you are the accused.
When you speak up, or have others speak up on your behalf, you are considered to be “retaliating“.
This buys you a psychiatric evaluation, courtesy of the Board.
For that, they want releases from every single physician you have seen for the past six years.
All your HIPAA stuff? They’ll own it.
Now step back and think of everything you have asked your physician about in the last six years. You comfortable with that in the hands of a state Board of Nursing, with ties to national nursing organizations and a member who works for Banner Health? You comfortable with that in the hands of a Board appointed psychiatrist?
That’s what you get for not keeping your mouth shut.
And to top it off, after ten months, someone on the Board will call your university directly and inform them you are under investigation.
Keep your mouth shut.
Even nursing colleagues have doubts.
“She must have done something else.”
“No one gets fired for just one thing.”
“We don’t know all the facts.”
“There’s two sides to every story.”
“She ought to keep her mouth shut.”
Does anyone even think for one minute how gutsy it was to go public…
and NOT keep your mouth shut?
That’s the problem.
Nurses do keep their mouths shut. All the time.
Because they are afraid. Isolated.
Fear of retribution by their employers. Doctors. Corporations who wave HIPAA like it’s the national flag.
And I’m sorry, but hospital corporations like Banner Health and state Boards of Nursing do NOT work in secrecy and isolation.
A nurse was FIRED and her LICENSE put up for investigation by an employer. THIS IS HUGE, PEOPLE. To fire a nurse for allegedly not following your policy is one thing. To go after her license is quite another.
You say you want the whole story?
The only way you are going to get the whole story is to get it out of the secrecy of corporate hallways and state boardrooms and start talking about it.
Stop keeping your mouth shut.