• 950 Boardwalk Suite 305, San Marcos, CA 92078
    • 760.705.4078
    • tvidals@rxpert.solutions

Second Victim

Rxpert Solutions > Controlled Substances > Second Victim

Those of you with experience in the area of patient safety or medication safety may be familiar with the term second victim. For those of you who may not be familiar with this term, second victims are health care professionals who are involved in an unanticipated adverse patient event, in a medical error and/or a patient related injury and become victimized in the sense that the professional is traumatized by the event. I think we need to consider something similar to this concept for peers of a healthcare professional who have been found to be diverting controlled substances for self use. In other words, they have been working with a colleague who has a substance abuse problem and this discovery affects the whole team.

Upon discovery that under your very nose you had a colleague who was struggling, a colleague who is loved and appreciated by the rest of the staff but did not feel they could ask for help, a colleague who struggled in silence to the point that they have now put their life, license, and patients’ safety at risk and all of this went unnoticed or ignored can leave peers feeling a bit shaken. They are left asking questions such as how could I have not noticed or what could I have done differently to prevent this. Perhaps they did notice something but made excuses for it and are now questioning how they should have better handled their concerns or observations that left them a bit uneasy.

In the aftermath of a diversion discovery, don’t forget about the second victims. They may need someone from Human Resources or Employee Assistance Program to talk with them. This is also a good time to remind them that help is out there if they too are struggling with a substance abuse problem and encourage them to get help.

Restorative justice is not a replacement of retributive justice, but a complement. It seeks the rehabilitation of the wrongdoer and the repair of the victim’s injury. –Lewis B. Smedes

Our References

Terri is absolutely phenomenal. She is an incredibly knowledgeable pharmacy resource. As the medication safety officer, the quality initiatives she implemented not only impacted the patients at our medical center but also reached into the community. Terri is a genuine professional who upholds accountability while creating community among her team members. She is a great listener to identify friction points and has actionable ideas to implement improvements.

Lab
T. Eagle. MBA, MLS(ASCP), CLS Lab Operations Manager

Terri is an expert at prospective risk identification -Failure, Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA). Terri participated in CHPSO Patient Safety Safe Tables and was part of the Hospital Quality Institute’s Regional Quality and Patient Safety Leader Network.
She is an excellent public speaker and communicates well with public and professional audiences. I look forward to her continued work in medication safety.

Regional Quality Network at HQI
A. Munoz, FACHE, CPHQ, CPPS VP

Terri has done a tremendous job with the controlled substance diversion program. She has had such a positive impact and has really made the hospital a safer place.

Tri-City Medical Center
Nurse Manager

We would not be where we are with the improvements we have made with opioid prescribing if it were not for Terri driving the process.

Tri-City Emergency Medical Group
Chief Physician

In addition to understanding the ins and outs of the [controlled substance use] process completely, she is very proactive in coming to me with provider issues that she detects. She truly balances the administrative duties and the regulatory components demand with a keen sense of what my practitioners do and what their needs are on the ground. Terri is instrumental in working with my department, balancing patient care, cooperation, ability, and integrity to get the job done.

UCSD Medical Center
Chief Anesthesiologist

Terri is knowledgeable and effective in pharmacy leadership. She has the ability to be able to anticipate and prepare for the future. Her ability to utilize resources effectively in this changing environment is a strong asset. She can adapt, evolve, mentor and still never say “no” when asked to assist. She exhibits great abilities to be flexible and is a “self starter”. She has a pleasant yet effective demeanor that commands results.

Candace Fong, Pharm D
System Director of Pharmacy and Medication Safety Common Spirit Health

Terri has always impressed me as being very smart. resourceful, creative, and easy to work with. Terri’s commitment to medication safety permeated our organization, raising the awareness of this important issue throughout all levels of the institution. Terri has always been engaged, cooperative, and generous with her time.

Cary Mells, MD
Chairman of the Department of Emergency Medicine Tri-City Medical Center

Terri has done more for the Pharmacy in her few months as Interim Pharmacy Director than any other Director has done during my 12 years here.

Anita Kennedy, MBA
VP of Ancillary Services Methodist Hospital

Contact Us

Address: 950 Boardwalk Suite 305, San Marcos, CA 92078

  • 760.705.4078
  • tvidals@rxpert.solutions