By The Associated Press
JACKSON — A Central Mississippi Medical Center nurse has been charged with sexual battery of an incapacitated person involving a sedated patient.
Scott Winn McLean, a 44-year-old McComb man, made an initial appearance Thursday. Bond was set at $150,000.
Police spokeswoman Colendula Green told The Clarion-Ledger that another nurse allegedly found McLean with his hands under a patient’s sheet on Dec. 5.
Green said the other nurse asked McLean what he was doing and he allegedly responded that was comforting the patient. McLean left the room at that point, but allegedly went back twice more.
“Sometime after that, she noticed him in the same position with the same patient, and it was reported to police,” Green said.
It wasn’t immediately clear if McLean had a lawyer.
CMMC officials said they take the allegations seriously.
“We are fully cooperating with the authorities and will take all necessary actions to protect our patients,” said CMMC Director of Marketing and Communications Andrew Kruger in a statement Thursday.
Green said she believes McLean has been suspended pending the outcome of the investigation.
Mississippi Nurses Association Executive Director Ricki Garrett said the allegation is shocking. He pointed to a recent Gallup poll that shows nurses as the most trusted profession for the 10th time in 11 years.
“When you consider the vast majority of nurses live up to that trust, all you can say is that this really is an unusual situation,” Garrett said. “It’s very unfortunate, but the vast majority of nurses are angels who really do care about their patients.”
Not only will McLean be under investigation by the police, Garrett said he’ll also be under scrutiny by the state Board of Nursing.
“Anytime a nurse is in trouble, whether it’s a criminal act or abuse of alcohol or drugs or whatever it may be, those nurses do have to go before the board and the alleged act is investigated and they determine what the appropriate steps should be,” she said.
Those steps can include suspension or loss of a nursing license, she said.
Information from: The Clarion-Ledger, http://www.clarionledger.com