My Story

Hello!

I am Melissa Brown, otherwise known as the Guerrilla Nurse. I am a former RN, now happily retired, living in Pensacola, Florida.

For 37 years, I practiced as an RN is multiple clinical settings including emergency nursing, flight nursing, all critical care units except neonatal and, from 2002 until 2013, as an RN in psychiatric and substance abuse settings.

The Guerrilla Nurse was born when Alene Nitzky RN PhD asked me to write a blog post for her new website, Fighting Dinosaurs

The first post was written just in time for Nurses’ Week in 2015. My second post was written about two weeks later.

Guerrilla Nurse: Part One
Guerrilla Nurse: Part Two

In May of 2013, I was fired from my position as an RN at Lakeview ASU in Pensacola, Florida. With the help and support of my husband, I was able to do what most nurses can’t do: I sued my prior employer.

And what an adventure it has been!

After my deposition on April 9, 2015, I learned I wouldn’t be able to obtain a copy due to the price: nearly $600.00! However, another nurse for whom I have the greatest respect, Donna Carol Maheady RN APRN EdD of Exceptional Nurse, suggested I start a gofundeme page in order to request donations so I could purchase my deposition. I didn’t think it would work, but within two weeks, I raised the funds from special nurses and other friends who believed in what I was trying to do.

I promised I would post the deposition online if and when I could buy it. Here it is: My Deposition

It is long — 225 pages! I had to redact, of course, all of the information that could identify patients or patient situations. In addition, after considerable thought, I decided to redact the names of all the nurses, psych techs and others with whom I worked while I was at ASU.

Several of the people whose names were brought up in my deposition still work at ASU. As they will see in my deposition, I tried my best to protect them. Yes, I was asked in my deposition to name those with whom I spoke or interacted after i was fired. The only thing I can do at this point is redact their names.

However, I did NOT redact the names of those in management who were responsible for my termination and ultimate suit against Lakeview ASU. Those names, as well as their actions, need to be exposed. I understand the risk. It is a risk I am willing to take.

I will leave it to my old coworkers to read this deposition. All of you need to know what you are up against should you decide to sue one of the largest health care corporations in town.

I also edited out one specific situation that was addressed in the deposition. To leave it as it stood could affect another nurse. I won’t do that.

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3 thoughts on “My Story

  1. Very good, too many take the abuse and stay silent. I love activists nurses, keep up the fight. And for naming names, bring attention to their ways. In you case you lost a job a career, in the state I am in, (AZ) they turn you over the board of nursing. who go along with the hospital in every case. Then you lose you license your career, your livelyhood, you reputation, your retirement , all savings , house, car, everything. Run you through court battles at taxpayers expense. Money for attoneys while the board has free legal help which in turn is supplying a lawyer for the hospital. Shameful of them. I will put my story soon and name names as well. thank you Mellissa,

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