Student Drug & Alcohol Policy

Policy Number: 
5.1.111
Revised: 
7/2020

Standards of Conduct

MTSA prohibits the unlawful manufacture, possession, use, or distribution of illegal drugs and alcohol on the MTSA campus, and any contingent site, or on the campus of any affiliate site. To further MTSA’s commitment to provide a healthy and thriving educational environment, and to stay in compliance with the Drug Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989, MTSA has established the following drug and alcohol policy.

Since many drugs alter one’s alertness, and mental alertness is crucial during the provision of anesthesia, students may be screened for drugs and alcohol at any time they are committed to either clinical or classroom assignments. MTSA contracts with an outside company to perform drug/alcohol screening of students throughout the program of study, as needed.

Students should be aware that if they are found to test positive for alcohol, illegal substances or substances without a current and valid prescription, MTSA is obligated to report such violation of the drug and alcohol policy to the State Board of Nursing. Therefore, students are required to report any alertness-altering prescribed substance use (i.e. treatment for anxiety and learning disabilities) to the Program Administrator.

 

MTSA Sanctions

To underscore the seriousness with which MTSA takes the issue of health and welfare of its constituent populations, the School will impose disciplinary sanctions on students - up to and including expulsion. If drug and alcohol violations are turned over to the State Board of Nursing, that Board will investigate and handle any prosecutions.

 

Health Risks

As part of the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989, MTSA is required to inform all students of the health risks associated with the use of illicit drugs and the abuse of alcohol.

The School recognizes that Substance Use Disorder of any sort is a major health problem.

Alcohol consumption causes a number of marked changes in behavior. Even low doses significantly impair the judgment and coordination required to drive a car safely, increasing the likelihood that the driver will be involved in an accident. Low to moderate doses of alcohol also increase the incidence of a variety of aggressive acts, including spouse and child abuse.

Moderate to high doses of alcohol cause marked impairments in higher mental functions, severely altering a person’s ability to learn and remember information. Very high doses cause respiratory depression and death. If combined with other depressants of the central nervous system, much lower doses of alcohol will produce the effects just described.

Repeated use of alcohol can lead to dependence. Sudden cessation of alcohol intake is likely to produce withdrawal symptoms, including severe anxiety, tremors, hallucinations, and convulsions. Alcohol withdrawal can be life-threatening. Long-term consumption of large quantities of alcohol, particularly when combined with poor nutrition, can also lead to permanent damage to vital organs such as the brain and the liver.

Mothers who drink alcohol during pregnancy may give birth to infants with fetal alcohol syndrome. These infants have irreversible physical abnormalities and mental retardation. In addition, research indicates that children of alcoholic parents are at greater risk than other youngsters of becoming alcoholics.

You can find more information on Substance Abuse and Health Risks in the Department of Justice’s, Drugs of Abuse resource guide here: https://www.dea.gov/sites/default/files/drug_of_abuse.pdf.

Resources

MTSA does not provide on-campus drug/alcohol counseling, treatment, or rehabilitation programs for students. There are many community resources that provide support, information and treatment. Upon request or in appropriate situations, the School may refer the student to a private counselor, center, or program for assistance with such needs.

Local Resources for Help

Nashville Poison Control

615-936-2034

https://www.vumc.org/poisoncenter/

AANA Peer Assistance Resource

800-654-5167

http://peerassistance.aana.com/directory.asp

TANA Peer Assistance Resource

800-654-5167

https://www.tncrna.com/peer-assistance/

Alcoholics Anonymous

615-831-1050

http://www.aanashville.org/

Narcotics Anonymous

888-476-2482

https://nanashville.org/

Cumberland Heights Treatment Ctr

615-356-2700

https://www.cumberlandheights.org/

TN Professional Assistant Program

615-726-4001

http://www.tnpap.org/

JourneyPure Treatment Center

888-633-9588

https://journeypure.com

Celebrate Recovery

615-604-2210

https://www.celebraterecovery.com/

Foundations Nashville

615-994-7872

https://www.foundationsrecoverynetwork.com

TN Crisis Svs & Suicide Prevention

855-274-7471

https://www.tn.gov/behavioral-health/need-help.html

 

Drug Laws

A full list of controlled substances as defined by Tennessee state law can be found here:

http://www.lcle.la.gov/sentencing_commission/Resources/I%20C.%20TN%20drug%20laws.pdf
https://statelaws.findlaw.com/tennessee-law/tennessee-drug-laws.html
https://discoveryplace.info/legal/drug-laws-tennessee/

The Federal DEA guidebook of Drugs of Abuse can be found on the DEA website. For more information: https://www.dea.gov/sites/default/files/drug_of_abuse.pdf#page=30

 

FEDERAL TRAFFICKING PENALTIES

DRUG/SCHEDULE QUANTITY PENALTIES QUANTITY PENALTIES
Cocaine (Schedule II) 500-4999 grams mixture

First Offense: Not less than 5 yrs, and not more than 40 yrs. If death or serious injury, not less than 20 or more than life. Fine of not more than $5 million if an individual, $25 million if not an individual.

Second Offense: Not less than 10 yrs. and not more than life. If death or serious injury, life imprisonment. Fine of not more than $8 million if an individual, $50 million if not an individual.

5 kgs or more mixture First Offense: Not less than 10 yrs, and not more than life. If death or serious injury, not less than 20 or more than life. Fine of not more than $10 million if an individual, $50 million if not an individual.

 

Second Offense: Not less than 20 yrs, and not more than life. If death or serious injury, life imprisonment. Fine of not more than $20 million if an individual, $75 million if not an individual.

2 or More Prior Offenses:
Life imprisonment. Fine of not more than $20 million if an individual. $75 million if not an individual.

Cocaine Base (Schedule II) 28-279 grams mixture 280 grams or more mixture
Fentanyl (Schedule II) 40-399 grams mixture 400 grams or more mixture
Fentanyl Analogue (Schedule 1) 10-99 grams mixture 100 grams or more mixture
Heroin (Schedule 1) 100-999 grams mixture 1 kg or more mixture
LSD (Schedule 1) 1-9 grams mixture 10 grams or more mixture
Methamphetamine (Schedule II) 5-49 grams pure or 50-499 grams mixture 50 grams or more pure or 500 grams or more mixture
PCP (Schedule II) 10-99 grams pure or 100-999 grams mixture 100 gm or more pure or 1 kg or more mixture
PENALTIES
Other Schedule 1 & II drugs (and any drug product containing Gamma Hydroxybutyric Acid) Any amount

First Offense: Not more than 20 yrs. If death or serious injury, not less than 20 yrs, or more than life. Fine $1 million if an individual, $5 million if not an individual.

Second Offense: Not more than 30 yrs. If death or serious bodily injury, life imprisonment. Fine $2 million if an individual, $10 million if not an individual.

Flunitrazepam (Schedule IV) 1 gram
Other Schedule III drugs Any amount

First Offense: Not more than 10 years. If death or serious injury, not more that 15 yrs. Fine not more than $500,000 if an individual, $2.5 million if not an individual.

Second Offense: Not more than 20 yrs. If death or serious injury, not more than 30 yrs. Fine not more than $1 million if an individual, $5 million if not an individual.

All other Schedule IV drugs Any amount

First Offense: Not more than 5 yrs. Fine not more than $250,000 if an individual, $1 million if not an individual.

Second Offense: Not more than 10 yrs. Fine not more than $500,000 if an individual, $2 million if other than an individual.

Flunitrazepam (Schedule IV) Other than 1 gram or more
All Schedule V drugs Any amount

First Offense: Not more than 1 yr. Fine not more than $100,000 if an individual, $250,000 if not an individual.

Second Offense: Not more than 4 yrs. Fine not more than $200,000 if an individual, $500,000 if not an individual.

 

Legal Sanctions Under Tennessee State and Federal Law

The following is a summary of Tennessee and federal sanctions for the unlawful use of illicit drugs and alcohol. While the summary is a good faith effort to provide information, MTSA does not guarantee that it is an error-free or exhaustive accounting.

Under federal law, a civil penalty of up to $100,000 and imprisonment of up to one year may be imposed for simple possession of certain specified controlled substances. Possession of crack cocaine may lead to civil penalties of up to $250,000 and imprisonment of up to twenty years. Also, possession of a controlled substance can result in the denial of federal benefits, such as student loans, grants, contracts and professional and commercial licenses, and the forfeiture of personal property and real estate used to transport, conceal or facilitate such possession. In addition, possession of a controlled substance can lead to ineligibility to receive or purchase a firearm.

Under federal law, it is unlawful to manufacture, distribute, dispense, deliver, sell or possess with intent to manufacture, distribute, dispense, deliver or sell controlled substances. The penalty imposed depends upon many factors that include the type and amount of controlled substance involved; the number or prior offenses, if any; whether death or serious bodily harm resulted from the use of such substance; and whether any other crimes were committed in connection with the use of the controlled substance. Even a first-time violation can result in life imprisonment; a fine of up to $4,000,000 per individual; supervised release; or any combination of these penalties. These sanctions are doubled when the offense involves either: (1) distribution or possession at or near a school or university campus, or (2) distribution to persons under 21 years of age. Repeat offenders may face greater penalties.

Under Tennessee law, it is unlawful for any person under the age of 21 to buy, possess, transport (unless in the course of their employment) or consume alcoholic beverages, including wine or beer. It is unlawful for any adult to buy alcoholic beverages for or furnish them for any purpose to anyone under 21 years of age. These offenses are classified Class A Misdemeanors punishable by imprisonment for not more than eleven months and twenty-nine days or a fine of not more than $2,500 or both. The offense of public intoxication is a Class A Misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment of not more than thirty days or a fine of not more than $50 or both.

Under Tennessee law, the offense of possession or casual exchange of a controlled substance (such as marijuana) is punishable as a Class A Misdemeanor (eleven months, twenty-nine days and/or a fine of $2,500). For the third and subsequent offense of possession of ½ oz. or less of marijuana, punishment is one to six years of imprisonment and a $3,000 fine. If there is an exchange from a person over 21 years of age to a person under 21 and the older person is at least two years older than the younger and the older person knows that the younger person is under 21, then the offense is classified as a felony. Possession of more than ½ oz. of marijuana under circumstances where intent to resell may be implicit is punishable by one to six years of imprisonment and a $5,000 fine for the first offense. Maximum Tennessee penalties for possession, manufacture or distribution of substantial quantities of a controlled substance range from fifteen to sixty years of imprisonment and up to a $500,000 fine. The State of Tennessee may, under certain circumstances, impound a vehicle used to transport or conceal controlled substances.

 

Student Aid and Drug Convictions

The Higher Education Act (HEA) of 1965 as amended suspends aid eligibility for students who have been convicted under federal or state laws of the sale or possessions of drugs, if the offense occurred during a period of enrollment for which the student was receiving federal student aid (grants, loans). www.studentaid.ed.gov