Guide offers insight for nurses recovering from substance abuse

6 February 2014
Julie Adams, Director, Marketing and Communications 
Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International
Guide offers insight for nurses recovering from substance abuse
Nation’s top recovery facilitators share expertise, real-world interviews
to help nurses re-enter workforce
INDIANAPOLIS — Approximately one in 10 nurses may be impaired by or in recovery from alcohol or drug addiction. Yet nurses who seek treatment have a good chance of successful recovery (American Nurse Today, August 2011). Now, nurses trying to regain control of their lives and careers can find help in a thoughtful guide written by two of the nation’s top recovery facilitators.
Re-Entry: A Guide for Nurses Dealing with Substance Use Disorder by Karolyn Crowley, RN, and Carrie Morgan, BA, is not only a personal compass for nurses traveling from addiction to professional re-entry, but also serves as an educational guide for supervisors, colleagues and administrators. The book is published by the Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International.
Crowley and Morgan take nurses step by step through the challenges they must face in their recovery journey, from dealing with the shame of losing their professional standing to the legal realities of licensing and monitoring. The guide is not written as an academic treatise on substance abuse disorder and treatment. Rather, the authors approach readers as they would in a face-to-face conversation.
“What gets people into treatment? Conversations, consequences, and interventions do. For this reason, we wrote this book in that order,” the authors share in the introduction. “This book is first and foremost a conversation that we would be having if [a nurse] anxiously stepped into one of our coaching sessions, called about an intervention, or showed up at a peer support group.”
Beyond the authors’ expertise and decades of experience, the guide includes interviews with recovery professionals and with nurses in recovery. As such, it provides insight rarely found in nursing literature on the subject.
Re-Entry is full of real-world, down-to-earth guidance for the recovering nurse or anyone who knows someone struggling with a substance use disorder. The authors expertly mix humor, hope, and many tried-and-true-techniques for the road to recovery to help illuminate this disease and diminish the fear so generally associated with it,” wrote John Southworth, CADC, NCAC, ICAADC, BRI-II, program coordinator for the Idaho Program for Recovering Nurses.
The book is available at
Re-Entry: A Guide for Nurses Dealing with Substance Use Disorder
By Karolyn Crowley, RN, and Carrie Morgan, BA
Published by STTI, 2013. ISBN-13: 9781938835155
Price: US $34.95. Soft cover, 272 pages. Trim size: 6 x 9 inches
About the authors: 
Karolyn Crowley, RN, is founder of Insight Support Groups, an alternative-to-discipline recovery program for nursing professionals that evolved from her work with the Idaho Board of Nursing. Crowley has been a registered nurse since 1985.
Carrie Morgan, BA, is a recovery coach, business consultant, speaker, and writer. Her recovery coaching expertise comes from combining recovery principles with 14 years of coaching and consulting experience. Morgan trains professional coaches and accompanies her clients and support groups on the journey from addiction to self-mastery.
The Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is advancing world health and celebrating nursing excellence in scholarship, leadership, and service. Founded in 1922, STTI has more than 135,000 active members in more than 85 countries. Members include practicing nurses, instructors, researchers, policymakers, entrepreneurs and others. STTI’s roughly 500 chapters are located at approximately 695 institutions of higher education throughout Armenia, Australia, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, England, Ghana, Hong Kong, Japan, Kenya, Lebanon, Malawi, Mexico, the Netherlands, Pakistan, Portugal, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Swaziland, Sweden, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, the United States, and Wales. More information about STTI can be found online at