Nurses at Harbor Point believed they were responsible for administering vaccines and writing orders for the physician

The Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services Office of Licensing received a report that nurses at Harbor Point Behavioral Health Center “had given flu shots without appropriate authorization by Physician.” The Office of Licensing initiated an investigation that resulted in five regulatory citations and a finding of neglect on the provider. The Office of Licensing wrote:
“Provider reported that twelve individual[s] received H1N1/Flu vaccines without proper authorization to do so. Nurses gave the vaccine and then wrote that they received telephone orders per Dr. Nurses interviewed by the Administrator indicated that, for vaccines, that nurses were allowed to give vaccines and that Dr. would sign off. This is a serious infraction of proper procedures. Upon further review, several other vaccines were given without Dr. orders.”
Additionally, the doctor at the facility indicated “that completion of immunizations were behind and that this was an issue.” The facility was required to submit a Corrective Action Plan to address the five regulatory deficiencies cited by the Office of Licensing. The physician involved in the incident was removed from direct patient care pending “a thorough investigation .. with respect to his treatment practices.” The two nurses were placed on administrative leave.