KERMIT, Tex. — It occurred to Anne Mitchell as she was writing the letter that she might lose her job, which is why she chose not to sign it. But it was beyond her conception that she would be indicted and threatened with 10 years in prison for doing what she knew a nurse must: inform state regulators that a doctor at her rural hospital was practicing bad medicine.
That’s from an article in today’s New York Times about a Texas nurse who’s being prosecuted for blowing the whistle on what she asserts were inappropriate medical practices by a doctor she worked with. We’ve posted on this as the case has developed and also written about it in the journal. Ultimately, the judgment is up to the court. But the concern we’ve expressed and which others have also voiced is that this will have the effect of silencing others who should be speaking out. In the process it may well reinforce old nurse–physician dynamics that profit no one. What do you think?
UPDATE: She was acquitted today (February 11)!