Federal Judge Sentences Haverhill Nurse to Five Years in Prison for Taking Patients’ Morphine

(File photograph.)

A Haverhill nurse was sentenced in federal court in Boston Monday for tampering with patients’ morphine.

As WHAV reported in June, 32-year-old Brianna Duffy, 32, pleaded guilty to one count of tampering with a consumer product and one count of acquiring a controlled substance by fraud or deception. She was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge William G. Young to five years in prison and three years of supervised release.

According to U.S. Andrew E. Lelling’s office, on March 17 and 18, 2019, while working as a registered nurse at Hunt Nursing and Rehab in Danvers, Duffy tampered with morphine sulfate prescribed to an 89-year old hospice patient. In an attempt to avoid detection, she replaced the extracted medication with another liquid, diluting the morphine to just 26% of the prescribed concentration. The hospice patient received the diluted morphine and suffered unnecessary pain.

From December 2016 until July 2017, while working as a registered nurse at Maplewood Care and Rehabilitation Center in Amesbury, Duffy diverted morphine from two bottles that were prescribed to a 68-year old patient. Duffy subsequently diluted the remaining morphine with another liquid, leaving only 1.2%-2.5% of the declared concentration of morphine. Duffy tested positive for morphine on July 18, 2017.

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