Nov 02

Unauthorized prescription call in

Suppose a clinical employee comes to you and says that she overheard one of your RN’s calling in a prescription yesterday for her daughter.  As best the employee could tell, she was calling it in under the name of your nurse practitioner (who was not even at work that day).  She also heard a conversation regarding “my nursing license allows me to do this” “the nurse practitioner would call this in if she were here”.  Let’s say the prescription was for Zithromax and there is no paper documentation that you can find.  To make matters more interesting, this RN has actually resigned from your practice and her last day is Friday this week.


Do you confirm this has happened by calling the pharmacy and finding out if the RX was actually called in, who called in and under what name the prescription was authorized?  Do you confront the employee? If it is true, do you report it to the Nursing board?, what else do I need to do?


As far as confirming the information, I would recommend checking with the pharmacy first to verify the script was called in but I would not notify the nursing board. It isn't that you don't want to allow employees to utilize your services to help them or their families. What you do want to be sure of, is that she is not circumventing appropriate medical care for her child and taking short cuts that could, in the end, cause her child harm.


If she wasn't already leaving I would have given her a formal warning about abusing her position. A second time and I would have let her go. All she had to do was ask and I’m sure someone would have ok'd the prescription but someone like this could become untrustworthy.


Do you have a written policy about employees seeking medical attention from one of your doctors? We have all run across cases where one of your very kind doctors is being taken advantage of by employees by going to him for all their aches and pains. Consider writing and adopting a policy that would allow an employee to seek out one of your doctors with their managers permission. That doctor would complete a very short form stating what their findings were and any scripts they wrote for the employee. The form should state that the employee is expected to contact their PCP for follow up. In the end, you may have less time missed at work to see the PCP or for illness.

About Reed Tinsley, CPA

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