Saturday, Apr 19, 2014
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ER clerk falsified credentials, stole patient's credit card


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BROOKSVILLE - An intake clerk at Spring Hill Regional Hospital, who stole and used a patient's credit card and falsified her nursing degree, relinquished her license to avoid further penalties.

Mary Lou Hardman, 48, of Spring Hill, was the subject of an investigation by the State Board of Nursing back in February. The investigation closed June 6.

In an application submitted by Hardman to the Board of Nursing to be a licensed practical nurse, the investigation found a fraudulent Associate of Science in Nursing degree from Pasco- Hernando Community College, as well as a fraudulent transcript.

Hardman was arrested and charged with a first-degree misdemeanor for the offense last November, which Hardman failed to report within 30 days to the Florida Department of Health. She pleaded guilty to claiming to possess a degree not awarded about three weeks later, court records show.

The hospital said Hardman only worked at the emergency room register and never worked as a nurse with patients at the hospital.

On Feb. 20, Hardman was also charged with stealing a patient's credit card while working as an intake clerk at Spring Hill Regional Hospital's emergency room, and she used the card multiple times, the investigation shows.

Less than a week later, Hardman agreed to voluntarily relinquish her license. The following day she was arrested for driving under the influence, court records show.

Hardman's employment has since been terminated, the hospital said.

About three weeks after surrendering her license, Hardman was arrested again for fraudulent use of a credit card and other charges.

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