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Health News Florida

Jacksonville nurse pleads guilty to replacing fentanyl with saline

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Court records show 35-year-old Monique Carter of Middleburg pleaded guilty Wednesday in Jacksonville federal court to tampering with a consumer product. She faces up to 10 years in prison.

A nurse working at a Jacksonville hospital has pleaded guilty to stealing fentanyl and replacing the powerful pain medication with saline.

Court records show 35-year-old Monique Carter of Middleburg pleaded guilty Wednesday in Jacksonville federal court to tampering with a consumer product. She faces up to 10 years in prison.

According to the plea agreement, Carter was working in an unnamed hospital's neural intensive care unit in September when a pharmacist examining the injectible fentanyl inventory found a syringe missing a tamper-proof cap.

A supervisor reviewing hospital records found a pattern of Carter checking out doses of fentanyl for patients but then canceling the transactions and checking syringes back into the hospital’s inventory.

According to the U.S. Atttorney's Office, Carter admitted to removing fentanyl from syringes and replacing the drug with saline, and was using fentanyl at home.

Tampering with the drugs meant critically ill patients were receiving diluted drugs that were not safe or effective. .