New Hampshire Union Leader – A significant amount of missing fentanyl from the intensive care unit at Cheshire Medical Center in Keene has prompted multiple investigations and the suspension of the chief nursing officer.
Registered nurse Amy Matthews had her license suspended on May 26, according to the order of emergency suspension by the state Board of Nursing.
At the hospital, Matthews manages nursing operations, including security, accounting and management of controlled substances.
The amount of fentanyl solution lost or stolen was more than 583 bags — approximately 7.7 gallons — between September 2021 and January 2022, according to the order.
More fentanyl was reported lost or stolen between April 10 and May 7, for a total loss of 7.84 gallons.
An investigation attributed 303 lost bags to nurse Alexandra Towle, who admitted to taking the solution. The remaining 280 were unaccounted for during the winter surge of COVID-19, according to the order.
Towle admitted to diverting 200 bags of fentanyl in January, approximately 100 bags in December 2021, approximately 50 to 100 bags in November 2021 and approximately 12 bags in October 2021, according to a preliminary agreement not to practice. She signed the agreement on Feb. 8.
According to Board of Pharmacy documents, Towle took the fentanyl “for her own use as a way of coping with the stress of working during the pandemic.”
An email she sent to the hospital said she gave 12 bags of fentanyl to a friend, according to the document.
Towle died unexpectedly on March 3 … read more.