A working Florida nurse passed out in a utility room with an IV in her arm, state says

·1 min read

A Fort Myers area nurse stole a surgical anesthetic during her shift, injected herself with it and was found passed out in a utility closet, the state said.

That’s according to the emergency restriction order (ERO) put on the license of registered nurse Trinia Ellis, who was working at Lehigh Regional Medical Center. The order prevents Ellis from practicing nursing until the Intervention Program for Nurses (IPN), which monitors impaired nurses, tells the Florida Department of Health that Ellis is safe to practice again.

An administrative complaint also has been filed in a discipline process that can end with anything from a fine to a suspension to license revocation. Ellis became licensed July 18, 2017.

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The ERO says on Nov. 20, Ellis took propofol, a drug that can induce deep sleep and actually stop breathing, from a utility room and injected herself with an IV.

“Ms. Ellis’ coworkers found her passed out in the utility room with the intravenous catheter in her left forearm,” the ERO states.

The ERO says urine and hair drug and alcohol screens also turned up Kratom, a drug the ERO says “can lead to psychotic symptoms and psychological and physiological dependence.” Some people take it to deal with opioid withdrawal, says the Mayo Clinic, which warns against the above possible side effects.

An addiction specialist doctor recommended Ellis go into a rehabilitation program and a monitoring contract with IPN. When Ellis didn’t, the ERO was issued.

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