Legal Aspects of Nursing Negligence by pptfiles


									Legal Aspects of Nursing Negligence What every nurse should know
Definition of nursing negligence When a nurse fails to use such care:
As 

a reasonably prudent nurse would use

In same or similar circumstances

Agenda We will look at the elements of negligence We will discuss the statute of limitations We will pose the question “should nurses carry professional liability?” We will also look at good measures for defense Overview Nurses must: Be knowledgeable about legal issues in health care. Practice good nursing care Know good defensives measures. Elements of negligence Duty Breach of duty Injury Proximate cause How is Duty defined Vocational nurse act  Board regulations  Health & safety laws  Case laws  Workplace policies/procedures  Custom/standards of practice Breach of duty is when the nurse the duty owed to the patient.

fails to follow through with

Injury must result from failure to provide duty to How is proximate causation Causation in fact

patient. defined


Every mistake

is NOT negligence Statute of limitations Time in which suit can be brought Adults—two years Children—can bring suit on their own when reach adulthood Exceptions--discovery rule/fraudulent concealment Should nurses carry professional liability? Nurses should be covered—personal/employer High-risk practice areas Homestead laws protect assets Immunity from liability--government positions/Good Samaritan laws

Professional liability The deepest pocket Can you afford legal defense---$100,000 per case to start Does your job require it Is your employer adequately covered Peace of mind Good defense against lawsuit Good documentation is good defense: Protect yourself Refresh your memory Communicate nursing process Benefit legal process Good defense Provide the best of care for every patient

„suit-prone‟ patient/family dissatisfied/uncooperative resentful

Good defense Courtesy Good people skills (P-R) Know your scope of practice and function accordingly Stay within the legal framework of your nurse act Function within the guidelines of your facility‟s policy/procedure manual Legal Pitfalls in Nursing Patient falls/injuries Take appropriate action Assist when needed Document all measure to protect


to follow orders or protocol If questionable consult MD or supervisior Legal Pitfalls in Nursing Medication Errors Know the medications/dose ranges Actions/side effects Indications/contraindications If unfamiliar—look it up! Improper use of equipment Must be in good condition If unfamiliar, seek help Use approved supplies/equipment Legal Pitfalls in Nursing

to monitor adequately

patient appropriately Monitor as condition dictates Document all findings Legal Pitfalls in Nursing Failure to communicate changes in patient‟s condition Listen to / asses all somatic complaints Keep physician informed Document all findings/ interventions

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