The state Board of Examiners for Nursing disciplined seven nurses Wednesday and reinstated the licenses of two nurses who had histories of drug abuse. The board reinstated the license of Sara Kaiser of Cromwell, a licensed practical nurse whose license was revoked in 2010 because of her abuse of heroin and morphine in 2009. In 2009, the board had placed her license on probation for four years after she admitted stealing Seroquel, a drug used to treat mood disorders, while working at the Elm Hill Nursing Center in Rocky Hill in 2007, records show. State records show she also admitted failing to accurately document medical records and abusing heroin and cocaine from 2002 to 2007. At a hearing in July, Kaiser presented testimony on her sobriety and that she was safe to practice as a nurse.
The Board of Examiners for Nursing has recently disciplined 13 nurses, and in nearly all of the cases, the nurses were abusing drugs or alcohol that affected their ability to practice. After a hearing this week, the board reinstated the license of Todd Stockheimer, a registered nurse who had been working for the Bristol-Myers Squibb drug company in Wallingford before being convicted of drug possession. The board also placed his license on probation for four years. State records show that Stockheimer had abused opioid painkillers after having back surgery in 2007 and that he received many of his prescriptions from a co-worker, Dr. Robert Hindes. In an unusual twist, Stockheimer sued Hindes for negligence, blaming his drug dependency on the doctor, and won a $3.5 million judgment, the Connecticut Law Tribune reported.