Nurse practitioner sentenced for drugs

WAILUKU -A nurse practitioner who called in prescriptions for herself while working at the Lanai Community Health Center three years ago has been ordered to pay a $2,000 fine.

As part of her sentencing Jan. 4, Kauai resident Jeanne Obert, 63, was given a chance to keep drug convictions off her record if she complies with court requirements for the next five years.

“Obviously, I’m remorseful,” she said in court. “I made the biggest mistake of my life. I will be dealing with it the rest of my life.”

Obert pleaded no contest to second-degree promotion of a harmful drug and possessing paraphernalia for a controlled substance.

Her attorney William Harrison said Obert wanted to maintain her nursing license. He said she had self-prescribed the medication for her own use while she was suffering from serious health problems.

Since then, Obert has gone through a drug addiction program, Harrison said. “She took steps to remedy the issues she was involved with,” he said.

Deputy Prosecutor Lewis Littlepage said that during a four-month period starting in October 2009, Obert called in six prescriptions to the Molokai Drugs Pharmacy. The prescriptions needed to be authorized by a consulting physician but weren’t, Littlepage said.

The state Narcotics Enforcement Division investigated, recovering 100 tablets of hydrocodone, a narcotic pain medication, during a search April 23, 2010, according to court records.

In sentencing Obert, 2nd Circuit Judge Richard Bissen found she was unlikely to commit another offense, noting she has no prior arrests or convictions. She was ordered not to consume alcohol or illegal drugs, with the exception of medical marijuana as long as she has a state card authorizing medical use of the drug.