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    To describe nurses with substance use disorder (SUD) in authority disciplinary actions. Nurses with SUD risk patient safety. Research evidence on the identification of nurses' SUD and related management procedures is currently sparse. Retrospective document analysis of decisions related to SUD in nurses' disciplinary actions. Decisions on nurses (N = 171) made by the Finnish National Supervisory Authority for Welfare and Health in Finland during 2007-2016 were used as data. An electronic extraction sheet was developed for data collection including variables (N = 34), of which 18 were analysed in this study with descriptive statistical methods and chi-squared statistics. The study reported in accordance with the STROBE checklist for cross-sectional studies. The mean age of the nurses was 43 years (SD 8.7). The most mentioned reasons for notifications leading to disciplinary actions were substance abuse with working while intoxicated and drug theft. The most mentioned intoxicants used were medicines and alcohol. On average, the first disciplinary decision was given at 6.4 months (SD 3.9) and the final decision was given at 17.9 months (SD 13.1). The most common decision was restriction of the right to practice. The results supported findings from previous decades and different continents, showing similar trends are prevalent globally and continue today. In future studies, countries' registers of nurses with SUD could be used to clarify the profile of nurses and develop appropriate procedures. Qualitative studies could be conducted to investigate to shed light on concealment of the phenomenon. There is a need for early identification, intervention and referral to treatment as well as effective protocols for reducing nurses' risks of disciplinary actions related to SUD. It is important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of SUD and training for this is needed. © 2022 The Authors. Journal of Clinical Nursing published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


    Katrimaija Luurila, Mari Kangasniemi, Marja Hult, Arja Häggman-Laitila. Nurses' substance use disorder in disciplinary procedures: A retrospective document analysis. Journal of clinical nursing. 2023 Jun;32(11-12):2663-2671

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    PMID: 35526092

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