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Burnaby nurse took pictures of confidential patient information on personal phone, BCCNM says

A nurse holds a tablet in this stock image from Shutterstock. A nurse holds a tablet in this stock image from Shutterstock.

A former Burnaby nurse who took pictures of a document containing confidential information about residents of a long-term care facility for "no work-related purpose" has been disciplined by her provincial college.

Samantha Joyce Ballesteros is a former licensed practical nurse, according to the B.C. College of Nurses and Midwives.

In June 2022, Ballesteros used a personal mobile device to take pictures of four pages of the document, which contained information on 114 residents of the facility, according to a notice about the case published on the BCCNM website Monday

"The registrant had no work-related purpose for obtaining the information," the notice reads. "Further, the registrant breached an undertaking and failed to co-operate with the regulator during the investigation."

According to the college, Ballesteros and the BCCNM's inquiry committee reached a consent agreement to resolve these "practice issues."

In that agreement, the former LPN voluntarily agreed to a public reprimand, a three-week suspension of her nursing registration, remedial education in ethics, privacy, responsibility and accountability, and "a regulatory practice consulting program to address the foundational issues underpinning this agreement."

Asked how a former nurse could have her registration suspended by the professional college, a spokesperson for BCCNM explained that the suspension would take effect should Ballesteros decide to reinstate her registration in the future.

In an email to CTV News, the spokesperson Ballesteros holds "non-practising" status with the college, which is why she's listed as a former nurse.

"Registrants can go non-practising for many reasons, including parental leave, leaving the profession, not renewing their registration, or other reasons," the spokesperson wrote.

"Should Ms. Ballesteros decide in the future to reinstate her registration, she would have to meet all of the requirements, and once she was granted practising registration, the suspension would then take effect before she could return to practice." Top Stories

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