State seizes nurse’s license after morphine theft and 6 years of monitoring

By Lynn Moore

A West Michigan nurse has had her license suspended on an emergency basis due to alleged substance abuse issues the state has been aware of for six years, state documents show.

Alice Ann Kieft of Nunica had her practical nursing license summarily suspended on Jan. 14 by the state’s Bureau of Professional Licensing, according to information obtained through the Michigan Freedom of Information Act.

A five-count administrative complaint indicates that Kieft has not complied with drug screen requirements that were part of an agreement with the state for her to continue practicing nursing. She previously tested positive for opioid pain medication and completed residential treatment, but repeatedly tested positive for alcohol after treatment.

Kieft has worked at nursing homes in Muskegon, including Brookhaven Medical Care Facility and Hillcrest Nursing and Rehabilitation.

Her issues with substance abuse date back to 2010, when Kieft admitted taking morphine from the Hillcrest Nursing home from which she resigned, according to a 2013 state administrative complaint against her. She also admitted to dependence on opioids in 2010, and entered a three-year monitoring agreement, according to the complaint.

She violated that agreement on multiple occasions, by failing to report for drug screens or providing diluted urine for screens, according to state documents. She also didn’t pay the drug screening facilities.

View the complaint against Alice Kieft:  Alice Kieft complaint.pdf

Kieft in December 2013 entered into another monitoring agreement with the state due to opioid dependence, according to the complaint. The agreement required her to not consume any alcohol, controlled substances or “mood-altering substances,” and to submit to drug screens.

However, in January and February 2014, her drug screens tested positive for alcohol and Tramadol, an opioid pain medication. Her monitoring agreement was extended twice because of positive screens or her failure to have a screen, and then amended to a “last chance” agreement in August 2014 because of repeated positive screens for alcohol.

In 2014 and 2015, she failed to report for drug screens, and in August 2015, one of Kieft’s screens was positive for Hydrocodone, which also is an opioid pain medication. As a result, in September 2015, she was removed from work, and her monitoring agreement specified that she couldn’t “obtain, possess, prescribe, dispense or administer controlled substances,” according to the complaint.

In September and October 2015, Kieft participated in residential treatment, but in November again tested positive for alcohol. Her therapist informed the state’s Health Professional Recovery Program that Kieft should begin a “bare minimum” of 30 days of residential treatment by Nov. 20.

On Nov. 20, Kieft failed to check in for drug screening and four days later told the state she wasn’t going to continue treatment and instead would “walk away” from her nursing license, according to the complaint.

The state issued a notice of summary suspension of Kieft’s license because “the public health, safety, or welfare requires emergency action.”

A final determination of Kieft’s license will be made following a formal hearing. She had 30 days to respond to the Jan. 14 complaint, but did not, according to a spokesman with the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.

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