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Florida nurse accused of swapping out vials containing fentanyl meant for patients with saline

By: April Carson

The United States Department of Justice recently confirmed that a previous nurse in Florida is being charged with manipulating fentanyl vials destined for use during surgery. The nurse, who worked in a surgical center in the state, allegedly swapped out vials containing fentanyl with saline solution. The replacement of the opioids meant that patients would not receive their prescribed dose of pain relief medication during surgery.

According to reports, Catherine Shannon Dunton, aged 54 and a registered nurse at an outpatient surgery center in Martin County is accused of substituting vials of liquid fentanyl citrate with saline.Dunton was charged with one count of tampering with a consumer product and could face up to 10 years in prison if convicted.

Fentanyl citrate serves to sedate surgical patients, keeping them still and numbing their pain so that the procedures can be performed safely. It is a powerful medication that is only meant to be administered by healthcare professionals. Tampering with this type of medication could have dangerous consequences and put patients’ health at risk.

The incident was reported after Dunton allegedly bragged about her actions to co-workers, saying she had replaced the vials with saline in order for the surgery to be postponed. This led to a subsequent investigation in which Dunton was charged with one count of tampering with a consumer product.

According to the Department of Justice, Dunton removed liquid fentanyl from vials and replaced it with saline before returning them for use in surgeries. Once the saline was administered to patients, it could have caused serious health risks including death.

It is unclear why Dunton allegedly tampered with the vials or her motive behind the act. However, healthcare professionals and patients should be aware that such tampering can occur and that medical personnel must be held accountable for their actions. The Department of Justice has made it clear that healthcare providers must be held responsible for their actions, and those who violate laws will face serious consequences.

The prosecution of Dunton is a reminder of the importance of safety protocols in healthcare settings. The incident also serves as an important reminder that all medical personnel should take extra care to ensure that the medications they are dispensing are the correct ones and that they have been stored properly.

t is paramount that all patients carefully look over their medications and ask questions if something feels off. Ultimately, it falls on healthcare professionals to ensure safe measures are taken so every individual can receive the best care possible.

Last Friday, a federal grand jury brought criminal charges against Dunton for tampering with medical-grade fentanyl. Should they find him guilty of these charges, the former nurse could face up to 10 years in jail or even more severe consequences.

This case shows the importance of healthcare professionals taking all necessary steps to ensure that medications are handled and administered correctly. Doing so is essential to maintain patient safety and promote a culture of trust between patients and their medical staff.

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April Carson is the daughter of Billy Carson. She received her bachelor's degree in Social Sciences from Jacksonville University, where she was also on the Women's Basketball team. She now has a successful clothing company that specializes in organic baby clothes and other items. Take a look at their most popular fall fashions on

To read more of April's blogs, check out her website! She publishes new blogs on a daily basis, including the most helpful mommy advice and baby care tips! Follow on IG @bossbabymav



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