Drug Diversion

Fox9 reported the tragic, yet far too common, theft of narcotics at nursing homes. This is the third time registered nurse Jody Diercks had her license suspended for allegedly stealing pain medications. The board previously suspended her license for stealing prescription pain medications from patients. She has been diagnosed with polysubstance dependence and a mental health condition.

The Minnesota Board of Nursing suspended her this time too. The third suspension on Thursday came 11 months after she was allegedly caught stealing pain medications from seven patients at a Mankato nursing home. Diercks denied the accusation and blamed the charting discrepancy on a “medication error” or the nurse who followed her shift. The Minnesota Board of Nursing took 11 months to suspend Diercks’ license after she was allegedly caught stealing pain meds. During that time, her license was in good standing.

The FOX 9 Investigation of her case shows chronic problems with stolen medications in nursing homes and assisted living, and lack of accountability.

Diercks told investigators she has seen “both sides of addiction” and got hooked on painkillers 30 years ago when they were prescribed for chronic back problems. The theft of medication in assisted living and nursing homes appears to be a growing problem. In public health lexicon it is known as “drug diversion.”