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Thursday, May 23, 2024

Leesburg nurse who was drunk during shift has license restricted

The Florida Surgeon General has issued an emergency order restricting the license of a Leesburg nurse who recorded a blood alcohol level of nearly four times the legal limit during a work shift.

The order of emergency restriction was issued against Jobie Lee Dillion by Florida Surgeon General Joseph A. Ladapo, MD on Friday, Sept. 29.

According to the order, Dillion was working as a registered nurse for UF Health Central Florida on April 29, 2023, during a 12-hour shift that began at 7 p.m. The order does not specify at which hospital Dillion was working.

According to the order, during his shift, Dillion “demonstrated impaired behavior” and “his speech was slurred and exaggerated.”

The order describes Dillion’s face as appearing “flushed” and his eyes as “red and glassy.” It says that he “was unsteady on his feet” and that he was “making nonsensical statements.”

Dillion underwent a toxicology screening at the request of his employer. He registered positive for “ethyl alcohol at .296 g/dL.” The order notes that a person “is presumed impaired” pursuant to Florida law when “their blood alcohol concentration is .08 grams per deciliter of blood or higher.”

After the results came back, Dillion’s supervisor arranged for someone to drive him home. The order indicates that Dillion refused and instead “drove himself.”

On August 10, 2023, Dillion underwent a “Department-ordered evaluation” with a doctor specializing in addiction medicine.¬†

During the evaluation, Dillion reported that his alcohol use had “began increasing in 2019” and that it had since escalated to a “lifetime high.” He stated that he “used alcohol to cope with mental stress” and to “help him fall asleep.”¬†

While addressing his alcohol consumption on April 29, 2023, Dillion admitted that he had “drank eight ounces of bourbon” before going to sleep at 9 a.m. His previous overnight shift ended at 7 a.m.

When he woke up that evening to prepare for his 7 p.m. shift, Dillion says he “did not feel intoxicated.” The order indicates that his account was inconsistent with the toxicology report.

“Mr. Dillion’s reported consumption of eight ounces of bourbon, at least ten hours prior to his next overnight shift, is inconsistent with his toxicology test results on April 29, 2023, which indicate an excessive exposure to alcohol,” reads the order.

The order goes on to state that Dillion not feeling the effects of alcohol prior to his shift “demonstrates his high tolerance for alcohol.”

After the evaluation, Dillion was diagnosed with alcohol use disorder and was recommended to enter into a residential treatment program and engage in monitoring by Intervention Project for Nurses, which provides education, monitoring, and support to nurses in the State of Florida.

According to the order, as of September 27, 2023, Dillion had not contacted IPN.

The order goes on to state that Dillion’s decision to drive home on the night in question, “despite knowing he had a high blood alcohol content,” showed that he lacked “good judgement and moral character to hold a position of trust.”

“Mr. Dillion’s alcohol intoxication while engaged in the practice of nursing is indicative of his problematic use of alcohol, and his resultant diagnosed substance use disorder impairs his ability to care for patients in a matter that is correct and safe,” reads the order.

The order indicates that the Florida Department of Health considered “various restrictions” on Dillion’s license, but determined that all of them would be “insufficient.”

“Mr. Dillion’s continued unrestricted practice of nursing constitutes an immediate, serious danger to the health, safety, or welfare of the people of the state of Florida,” reads the order.

Dillion’s license was immediately restricted and he is prohibited from practicing until “IPN or an IPN-approved evaluator notifies the Department that Mr. Dillion is safe to resume the practice of nursing.”

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