It’s hard to say exactly what would motivate a woman to pose as a nurse, administer shots, and give medical advice without a nurse’s license. Perhaps it had something to do with the blank prescription forms that she obtained from her unknowing employer (a real doctor) before using them to forge illicit pain-killer prescriptions for herself.
Certainly, the 57-year-old woman, Betty A. Lichtenstein of Danbury, Conn., has her issues. She handed over a bag of 20 medications to her jailers after her sentencing, and before leaving court this week, according to the Connecticut Post.
Ironically, the doctor that hired Lichtenstein (Dr. Gerald Weiss of Norwalk) without checking her background was fined $2,000 by the Connecticut Department of Public Health. Weiss bought into the plot hook, line and sinker apparently, even agreeing to speak at the faux “Nurse of the Year” ceremony on behalf of his faux nurse.
For all of her troubles, Lichtenstein must serve only nine months in prison, followed by three years of probation. She pleaded guilty to one count of practicing nursing without a license, one count of criminal impersonation one count of forgery in the second degree for the forged narcotics prescriptions. Lichtenstein can never work in the medical profession again, and she must inform all potential employees of her convictions.
This begs a few questions, including: How many medical professionals are not medical professionals (see a story earlier this month regarding a fake cardiologist who taught classes for 25 years)? And, are the penalties severe enough for those who misrepresent themselves and potentially take the safety of others into their own hands?
Lichtenstein received only 9 months behind bars, her employing doctor received a slap on the wrist for hiring a non-licensed nurse, and the man in the above story served no jail time at all (although he lost both his consulting job and his commercial pilot’s job).
What do you think?
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