Nursing home residents in Ohio and around the country often rely on medications like morphine to manage their pain, and they can suffer greatly when these drugs are interfered with. This is what prosecutors say happened at a Virginia nursing home in August 2018. A Maryland man who was employed by the Chesapeake facility as a supervisory registered nurse has been indicted by a federal grand jury for tampering with a consumer product. He is said to have used saline solution to dilute the morphine prescribed to a patient.

The man’s alleged activities were reported to federal and state authorities after discrepancies were discovered during a routine audit. U.S. attorneys say the man showed reckless disregard for the welfare of his patient when he diluted their pain medication to the point where only about 14% of the prescribed dose was being administered. A motive for the alleged crime has not been revealed, but these acts are often committed by individuals seeking drugs for their personal use according to prosecutors.

A records check reveals that the man was licensed as a registered nurse in Virginia in 2013. He has also been authorized to perform nursing work in Maryland, North Carolina, and West Virginia. While he remains in good standing with Virginia health authorities, a magistrate has prohibited him from working in health care until his pending criminal case is resolved. His license is scheduled to expire in June 2021.

Personal injury attorneys with experience in cases involving nursing home negligence may take legal action on behalf of patients who are harmed in incidents that could have been prevented if reasonable steps had been taken. Nursing homes may face litigation when their cost-cutting efforts leave patients with inadequate care or they hire unqualified staff to administer medicine or medical treatment.