Slip-ups and mistakes caused by drug-use are inexcusable in the Healthcare Industry and could be fatal. Healthcare professionals are the hands in which we put our health and future in, and those hands need to be steady.
Substance abuse by nurses, physicians and any hospital employee directly compromises the safety of patients. Additional to potential recreational drug use, dangerous drugs used for sedation and pain management in the healthcare industry are readily available to these employees.
The American Association of Nurse Anesthetists reported that the addiction rate among anesthesiologists and nurse anesthetists exceeded 15 percent. An anonymous survey of drug abuse among Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) found that 10 percent of CRNAs reported abuse of the controlled drugs used in their practice.
Other studies estimate that nurses generally misuse drugs and alcohol at nearly the same rate (10 to 15 percent) as the rest of the population.
Approximately 12-15% of all physicians and nurses will experience substance abuse issues at some point during their career, and these statistics are very much in line with the levels of addiction that have been found among the public as a whole.
A study conducted by the University of Washington found about 15 percent of surgeons have alcohol abuse or dependency problems. Also, approximately 14 percent of male surgeons and 25 percent of female surgeons showed signs of alcohol dependencies.
The substances which are generally abused by those in the healthcare industry are as follows:
Sedatives– Diprivan© (Propofol)
Benzodiazepines– Xanax© (alprazolam), Librium© (chlordiazepoxide), Valium© (diazepam), Klonopin© (Clonazepam), Halcion© (triazolam), and Ativan© (lorazepam)
Barbiturates- Amytal© (amobarbital sodium) , Nembutal© (pentobarbital sodium), Seconal© (secobarbital sodium), and Phenobarbital
Opiates/Narcotics- i.e., painkillers: Vicodin© (hydrocodone bitartrate and acetaminophen), Percocet© (oxycodone and acetaminophen) , OxyContin©(oxycodone hydrochloride), Dilaudid© (hydromorphone), Morphine (Roxanol, Dura morphine, morphine sulfate, morphine hydrochloride), Methadone (synthetic narcotic) Demerol© (meperidine hydrochloride), Fentanyl (Sublimaze©, Actiq©, Duragesic©), Ultram© (tramadol hydrochloride), and Codeine
Stimulants- Cocaine, Amphetamines, Methamphetamines, Methylphenidate, MDMA (methylenedioxy-methamphetamine)
Cannabinoids- Hashish, Marijuana
Click to learn more about the statistics of drug use and abuse in the Healthcare industry today.
Testing healthcare employees with basic 5 and 10 panel tests will not cover the commonly used and readily available substances. A Healthcare Professional Profile (HPP) is the most comprehensive type of test available, and the most relevant in this type of drug screening.
The HPP has the capability of detecting the following substance categories:
Amphetamines, Barbiturates, Cocaine Metabolite, Marijuana Metabolite, Methadone, PCP, Propoxyphene, Opiates, Benzodiazepines, Fentanyl, Meperidine, Tramadol, Adulterants, Alcohol, Narcotics, Antidepressants and Stimulants.
For answers to any questions, contact DISA today. We are here to help.