For immediate release: December 11, 2018 (18-169)
Contact: Sharon Moysiuk, Strategic Communications Office 360-549-6471
Public inquiries: Health Systems Customer Service 360-236-4700
State revokes, suspends licenses, certifications, registrations of health care providers
OLYMPIA -- The Washington State Department of Health has revoked or suspended the licenses, certifications, or registrations of health care providers in our state. The department has also immediately suspended the credentials of people who have been prohibited from practicing in other states.
The department’s Health Systems Quality Assurance Division works with boards, commissions and advisory committees to set licensing standards for more than 80 health care professions (e.g., medical doctors, nurses, counselors).
Information about health care providers is on the agency’s website. Click on “Look up a health care provider license” in the “How Do I?” section of the Department of Health home page (doh.wa.gov). The site includes information about a health care provider’s license status, the expiration and renewal date of their credential, disciplinary actions and copies of legal documents issued after July 1998. This information is also available by calling 360-236-4700. Consumers who think a health care provider acted unprofessionally are also encouraged to call and report their complaint.
In November 2018 the Nursing Commission indefinitely suspended the registered nurse credential of Elizabeth D. Metteer, also known as Elizabeth Esteban Young (RN60079788). While Metteer was working at a nursing home, she didn’t assess two residents or give them their medications during her shift.
In November 2018 the Nursing Commission indefinitely suspended the registered nurse credential of Mindy L. Hinsdale (RN00167145), who didn’t comply with a substance abuse monitoring program.
In November 2018 the secretary of health suspended for at least 42 months the registered nurse and advanced registered nurse practitioner credentials of Kathryn Ann Willits (RN60481638, AP60477617), who had a sexual relationship with a patient.
In November 2018 the Nursing Commission indefinitely suspended the registered nurse and advanced registered nurse practitioner credentials of Chris Leon Porter (RN00148053, AP30006421), who didn’t abide by a probationary requirement to complete an educational intervention program.
In November 2018 the secretary of health suspended for at least 20 years the certified nursing assistant credential of William Christopher Merritt (NC60517610). In 2018 Merritt was charged with first-degree burglary with sexual motivation, indecent liberties, two counts of second-degree assault, first-degree voyeurism, and attempting to elude pursuing police vehicle.
In November 2018 the secretary of health suspended for at least 10 years the registered nursing assistant credential of Hinga Eric Gikaru (NA60534707). Gikaru assaulted a client, causing injuries that required medical treatment. Gikaru first claimed the client had caused the injuries, but subsequently admitted he had hit and kicked the client.
In November 2018 the Nursing Commission indefinitely suspended the registered nurse credential of Cynthia Dawn Fajmon (RN60286419), who didn’t comply with a substance abuse monitoring contract.
In November 2018 the Nursing Assistant Program entered an agreement with certified nursing assistant Saniza Neaha Nisha (NC60492940) that suspends her credential for at least three years. Nisha got credit cards and credit card information from four retirement facility residents, and made fraudulent purchases without the residents’ permission.
In November 2018 the Pharmacy Commission entered an agreement with pharmacy assistant and pharmacy technician Cassandra Lynn Yaummarath (VB60162415, VA60195928) that indefinitely suspends her credentials. Yaummarath diverted drugs from the pharmacy where she worked, and said she didn’t recall having done so.
In November 2018 the Nursing Assistant Program charged certified nursing assistant Haddy Bittaye (NC60318678) with unprofessional conduct and immediately suspended her credential. After Bittaye struck an assisted living facility resident, the state Department of Social and Health Services found that she physically abused a vulnerable adult in her care. She can’t be employed in caring for or having unsupervised access to vulnerable adults.
In November 2018 the Chiropractic Commission entered an agreement with chiropractor Stephen R. Hathaway (CH00000849) that indefinitely suspends his credential. Hathaway didn’t comply with a probationary requirement by refusing to allow a Department of Health investigator to perform an unannounced audit.
In November 2018 the Dental Commission conditionally entered an agreement with dental assistant Jessica Ferne Stonehouse (D160796342) that indefinitely suspends her credential. The dental assistant didn’t comply with a substance abuse monitoring contract.
Out of State
Florida: In November 2018 the Respiratory Care Practitioner and Nursing Assistant programs indefinitely suspended the respiratory care practitioner and registered nursing assistant credentials of Sonia M. Whyte (LR00003355, NA60120000). Whyte didn’t comply with probationary requirements to pay a $2,000 fine, submit proof of having completed respiratory patient care courses, and submit performance reports.
Idaho: In November 2018 the Nursing Commission charged registered nurse Wendi Gonzales (RN60741223) with unprofessional conduct and immediately suspended her credential. Charges say in 2018 Gonzales’s application for a nurse license in the U.S. Virgin Islands was denied because she submitted fraudulent documents. In 2018 she surrendered her Alaska registered nurse license because of allegations that she obtained the license by fraud or deceit. In 2018 her Minnesota nurse license was suspended in connection with the U.S. Virgin Islands and Alaska cases.