State fines nurse $5,000 for inappropriate prescribing

December 19, 2018

A nurse at Avon Old Farms School was fined $5,000 Wednesday by the state Board of Examiners for Nursing for inappropriately prescribing controlled substances to herself, family members and friends 42 times.

Lenore Leone of Avon, an advanced practice registered nurse, who works at the private school under her married name, Lenore Severni, prescribed the drugs for herself and seven friends and relatives from 2014 to 2017, a consent order she agreed to said. The board also reprimanded her license.

In August, the board had rejected a $2,500 fine against Leone, with some members saying the fine was too low.

In separate action with the state Department of Consumer Protection in 2017, Leone agreed not to prescribe controlled substances for herself, her family or friends except in an emergency, the order said. In signing the order, Leone admitted no wrongdoing but chose not to contest the allegations.

The board also revoked the registered nurse license of Amanda Alarcon of Shelton because she violated an earlier four-year probation the board had imposed in 2017. At the time, it placed her license on probation for four years because she had abused heroin between 2011 and 2014, state records show.

The board found Wednesday that she had failed to attend therapy sessions and failed to submit to random drug tests, records show.

Other actions included placing the registered nurse license of Charlene Zikaras of Milford on probation for four years and ordered her to undergo random drug and alcohol tests, a consent order she agreed to said.

The order said that Zikaras abused alcohol to excess in January and February but her urine tests have been negative for alcohol since March.

The board also ordered a four-year probation for Christine DeFusco, a licensed practical nurse, of Rocky Hill, after finding that in 2016, she abused alcohol to excess, a memorandum of decision said.

That year, she was arrested in Rocky Hill, admitted to drinking vodka in her car and was charged with her third DUI, the memorandum states. At the time, she was on a court-ordered probation for a 2013 DUI conviction, it states. In 2016, she pleaded guilty to the third DUI charge and had a breathalyzer device attached to the ignition of her car, records show.

DeFusco has undergone treatment for alcohol use disorder, records show. While her license is on probation, she must undergo random drug and alcohol attests and continue therapy, the memorandum states.

This story was reported under a partnership with the Connecticut Health I-Team, a nonprofit news organization dedicated to health reporting. (c-hit.org).

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