The Courier-Mail

Nurse forged 122 scripts for drugs

- Pharmaceutical Industry · Crime · Industries · New South Wales · Queensland Health

A FOR­MER Cairns Hos­pi­tal nurse who stole pre­scrip­tion pads and forged Queens­land doc­tors’ sig­na­tures to ob­tain drugs also forged scripts in NSW.

Queens­land Health reg­u­la­tors knew of An­dreana Francesca King’s ad­dic­tion to opi­oid med­i­ca­tion when she came from New Zealand to Queens­land to work as a nurse in 2009. When King’s Cairns home was searched in 2017, po­lice found 122 forged pre­scrip­tion sheets con­tain­ing stolen pa­tient de­tails. The nurse used the de­tails to fraud­u­lently ob­tain var­i­ous forms of ben­zo­di­azepine med­i­ca­tions, for her own use, a tri­bunal heard.

In 2017, King was con­victed of fraud by dis­hon­est ap­pli­ca­tion of her em­ployer’s prop­erty and steal­ing as a pub­lic ser­vant, over a three­year pe­riod. She also was con­victed of three counts of drug pos­ses­sion and was placed on pro­ba­tion for two years, with con­vic­tions recorded.

The Queens­land Civil and Ad­min­is­tra­tive Tri­bunal heard that King worked un­der con­di­tions in New Zealand be­cause of her known ad­dic­tion to opi­oid med­i­ca­tion. The Aus­tralian health reg­u­la­tion author­ity re­quired her to un­dergo a psy­chi­atric eval­u­a­tion be­fore she could work as a nurse in Queens­land.

King lost her hos­pi­tal job in 2017. Last year she was con­victed in NSW af­ter forg­ing scripts, the tri­bunal said. She sur­ren­dered her reg­is­tra­tion in May last year.

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