Nurse Who Took Picture of Unconscious Patient's Penis Gives Up License

Investigators began their probe after colleagues at Upstate University Hospital complained that the woman sent two pictures of patients via text message.

A New York nurse surrendered her license to practice in the state after being accused of “moral unfitness” for taking a picture of an unconscious patient’s penis with her iPhone, officials said.

Kristen Johnson, 27, of Fulton, “did not contest the charge of moral unfitness in the practice,” the New York State Board of Regents wrote.

Johnson was made to give up her license after she pleaded guilty to misdemeanor disseminating of unlawful surveillance photos, authorities said.

The charge was reduced from a felony as part of a plea deal that also requires Johnson to spend three years on probation.

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News of Johnson’s punishment angered some who took to social media to decry what they called a slap on the wrist and a double standard.

“If a male nurse or doctor did this to a female patient, there is no way they'd be so lenient,” one person wrote on Facebook.

“When a person is unconscious it is a nurse’s priority to keep them SAFE,” another posted.

Investigators began their probe into Johnson after colleagues at Upstate University Hospital complained that she sent two pictures of patients via text message in 2014.

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“The privacy of our patients is a fundamental aspect of our care,” the hospital said in a statement at the time, reported. “It is at the core of our relationship with our patients and their loved ones.

“This individual case is not reflective of the more than 2,000 registered nurses and nursing staff who work around the clock every day at Upstate and are committed to the care and safety of their patients.” 

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