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Continued: Patients, families are in the dark over risky Minnesota nurses

  • Article by: BRANDON STAHL , Star Tribune
  • Last update: November 14, 2013 - 9:51 AM

When Ingalls arrived at her home in December 2010, Anderson said she initially found the nurse to be friendly and attentive to her daughter.

In April 2011, Ingalls got a letter from the Nursing Board. The board was inquiring for the first time about the maltreatment finding and requested her response. Ingalls said she was going to respond but then, “I did the other thing.”

Ingalls was referring to what happened at the Anderson house. In the spring of 2011, Anderson noticed strange behavior by her daughter’s nurse. Ingalls became manic and spent an unusual amount of time in the bathroom with her purse, Anderson said. Then her daughter’s oxycodone started disappearing.

Anderson suspected the nurse. She called Good Neighbor. They agreed to put out a fake bottle of prescription medication, which soon went missing during Ingalls’ shift. Ingalls confessed to her boss, then to police.

Ingalls said that when she was caught, she was struggling with back pain and ran out of medication.

“I borrowed some from my client,” she said. “It was just a stupid ass thing to do.”

Good Neighbor Home Health Care did not respond to requests for comment. When told that the state was forbidden from telling the home health care company about the maltreatment, Anderson said, “That is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard.”

Ingalls pleaded guilty to one count of felony theft in September 2011. The Nursing Board suspended her license in June 2012, after she missed two scheduled meetings.

Ingalls said she could have gotten another job before she was suspended but didn’t because she had back surgery. In September 2013, she pleaded guilty to a new charge of felony drug possession.

Ingalls said she hopes to get her nursing license reinstated, for which she can petition the board after she is able to show two years of sobriety. But that’s been difficult, she said. She said she has become addicted to painkillers due to the back injury and is going through methadone treatment.

 

Data editor Glenn Howatt contributed to this report.

Brandon Stahl • 612-673-4626

 











 

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