Month: July 2020

Celebrating Nurse Assistants

Let’s take a moment to celebrate some of the unsung heroes of our healthcare industry! Let’s celebrate Nurse Assistants! 

We have been celebrating Nurse Assistants for the past couple months due to Covid-19, but did you know there is a true nurse assistant holiday that has been alive since 1977? It starts with a day of appreciation on the Thursday of the second full week of June followed by celebration for another 6 days. 

How did this celebration start? The CNA profession started the same time that World War I started. These CNA’s served alongside Army Nurses and helped in many areas such as hospitals, the army field and reserve, and the bases as well. It wasn’t until six decades later that CNA’s really blossomed as President Ronald Regan signed the Omnibus Reconciliation Act of 1987 which was an act to improve nursing homes. Now we see CNA’s everywhere and because of their hard work, they get a whole week dedicated to them every year.  

What positions or titles count as nurses assistants? There are many different titles and positions given and all of them are equally important to one another. We all know the Nursing Assistant, but do we think about Nurse Aides? Other titles include Direct Care Worker, Health Care Assistant, Personal Care Assistant, Hospice Aide, and many other titles. They all have one purpose which is to take care of people so be sure to remember these titles and go show your appreciation to someone you know. 

How can we celebrate these nurses? How can we show that we see them and know how important their role is? If you work in a hospital or somewhere alongside CNA’s, host a hospital wide event for them. Get the whole staff involved by making pins or buttons for everyone’s uniforms. Bring your local city leaders to their workplace and let the CNA’s know how much they help the community. Doing these things let them know we care about them and it will motivate them to perform even better. 

What are some ways we can say “Thank You” to the CNA’s? A great way to do that is on social media. Post an appreciation post or photo for someone you know who is a CNA or just about CNA’s in general. Getting the word out like that will make everyone want to thank them. You can also have your clubs, workplace, or other groups take a little time to write thank you notes and letters. Let them know you really care and are grateful for all they do. 

There are many other things I could talk about, but I just want everyone to remember CNA’s and what they do for us. If you take anything away from this, I hope you take these 3 things: 

  • Go learn about THEM and their history
  • Make time to recognize THEM and the hard work they do every day
  • Say “Thank You” to THEM every chance you get

They deserve our love because without THEM, our healthcare would be affected immensely.

Anatomy of an OIG Record Part II

From the website.

“OIG is required by law to exclude from participation in all Federal health care programs individuals and entities convicted of the following types of criminal offenses: Medicare or Medicaid fraud, as well as other offenses related to the delivery of items or services under Medicare, Medicaid, SCHIP, or other State health care programs; patient abuse or neglect;  felony convictions for other health care-related fraud, theft, or other financial misconduct; and felony convictions relating to unlawful manufacture, distribution, prescription, or dispensing of controlled substances.”

Sometimes an individual who has been in trouble will move to another state and attempt to resume or practice their medical profession. Such was the case with Laura Lynn Bell, who also went by the name Sukanlaya Hughes.

Laura Bell was a nurse in Arizona when her license was suspended in 2015 for domestic violence arrest among other things. From there she went on to defraud Veteran Affairs of almost $800,000. Without a license, and with charges against her, Laura attempted to steal an identity, forging documents and papers in the name of Alicia Houston. This was a skill she was already adept with since she stole identities of nurse practitioners and former patients to bill for medical services while working for VA.

A quick glance on nursys shows Laura Bell was able to practice nursing in six different states with a seventh as an applicant for a nurse practitioner in North Dakota before she was caught and her licenses revoked.

People like Laura Bell must be carefully scrutinized because they do what they can to slip under the radar and emerge somewhere else where they can continue to harm the people they look after. This makes it essential to check against databases such as the Federal OIG because these databases allow checks by SSN. Undoubtedly there will be those who find a way to change their social security numbers, but the extra precaution might unearth clues to things behind the scenes.