Get the Facts About the Diversion Program
Q. I received a letter from the Board of Nursing offering me the Diversion Program, because I am being accused of taking medication from my facility due to some waste discrepancies. What should I do?
A: This a very personal decision… if you have some meds that can’t be accounted for and you did not take them, then Diversion will not be a good choice. Therefore, you should call a lawyer right away (preferably us, because we know this stuff!). However, if you did take the medication for personal use because you have a dependency problem, then the Diversion Program would be a good option.
Q. I would like to learn facts about the Diversion Program; foremost, what is the BRN’s Diversion Program?
A: It is a “confidential recovery program” that is outsourced to a company called Maximus. It is intended to help nurses overcome mental health issues or addictions. Please keep in mind that the Diversion Program is ONLY confidential if you remain in it and successfully complete it. First learn your facts about the diversion program before doing anything.
Q. Do I have to reply to the offer of the Diversion Program? What happens if I just ignore it?
A: If you reply, decline or ignore it you will likely have the same result. If the Board has any information that you’ve had a DUI, taken medication from your facility, falsified a prescription, wasted medication improperly, gave improper doses to patients, have your own prescribed narcotic pain medication, has evidence of pyxis discrepancies, etc., you will receive a formal accusation from the Board of Nursing.
Q. What would happen if I begin Diversion and then decide it is not right for me?
A: Everything that you tell your Maximus case coordinator and everything in your file will be turned over to the enforcement unit of the Board of Nursing and used as evidence to discipline your RN license. You must sign a waiver of confidentiality when you are admitted. You are also not entitled to your own file.
Q. I’ve heard that I cannot work when I am in the Diversion Program; is this true?
A: It is true. Your license is placed on INACTIVE status as soon as you are admitted to the program. We have had clients who were accidentally placed on inactive status just for speaking to the Diversion coordinator. Please, carefully weigh all of your options and get all of the information regarding the Diversion Program even before you just call to speak to them.
Q. I am being offered the Board of Registered Nursing Program’s Diversion Program and I have no idea why.
A: If the Board has received any tips or has information that you’ve had a DUI, taken medication from your facility, falsified a prescription, wasted medication improperly, gave improper doses to patients, have your own properly prescribed narcotic pain medication, has evidence of pyxis discrepancies, etc., this will lead to an investigation. The Board takes any drug or alcohol related matters very seriously and they will investigate. The most important thing that you can do to protect yourself is get the help and support of an attorney. Remember, the hospital or facility has all the charts, all the records, all the proof. All you have is your word and hopefully, your lawyer.