The Importance Of Understanding Nursing Malpractice

1458 words - 6 pages

“Nursing Accidents Unleash Silent Killers”, according to the article titled “A Wake-up Call” (Marilyn S. Fetter 2011). Mistakes or errors implemented by nurses nationwide not only kill but injure thousands. This perception of practicing nurses continuously causing errors and mistakes can be changed and something can be done about it. Although, rare cases of nursing malpractice are still on the rise. Malpractice is a serious case in which can be avoided completely by a skilled nurse who in which follows standards and safety precautions to accurately and correctly care for each and every patient. The nurse’s role in healthcare continues to expand throughout the years. For example, with the new ...view middle of the document...

” Before a malpractice suit or case can even be established, negligence by the nurse needs to be authenticated. The nurse, as a professional health care provider, holds the responsibility of providing appropriate care whether it’s for individuals, families, or communities by helping preserve a quality of life. This can occasionally be an overwhelming occupation for some nurses, which may cause or leave room for error and common yet avoidable mistakes.
Also, there is an enormous difference between malpractice and unfortunate events. According to Kevin Giordano (2010) “Not all unexpected, unintended, or even undesired medical results can be attributed to the fault of the healthcare provider.” For example, a single simple surgical procedure can come with lots of risks and can contain a various amount of danger that countless believe cannot or will not happen to them. If the surgeon does everything right and the patient dies on the table in certain situations however, it is likely no negligence occurred. As a nurse it is also important to know the difference between malpractice and misfortune. The nursing malpractice from a legal prospective must include the following key elements to be considered a case. The first element is to prove in fact there was a patient-nurse relationship or also known as duty. The nurse’s violation of duty is interpreted as the failure of the nurse as a professional to abide by hospital policy and or procedures, standards of care, discounting educational training, nursing textbooks or Board of Registered Nursing (BRN), etc. Next element of a malpractice case includes causation. According to Ruth C. Ashley (2009) “Once the standard of care is determined, the plaintiff must show that the nurse breached or violated that standard of care.” In other words the nurse’s error or mistake must have caused in some way shape or form harm to the patient. Then next is what did the nurse on duty do about his or her actions that involved error or omission of mistake. The last and most important element to the nursing malpractice case is proof that the nurse’s mistake caused the patient injury. According to the law, if there was never an injury sustained by the patient, then there is no recognized negligence involved. Each element must be proven with accurate facts and hard evidence in order to prove nursing malpractice did in fact occur. When all of these elements are met a malpractice case in court will follow. It is important for the nurse to always be protected against malpractice suits so it’s very imperative to recognize employer’s malpractice insurance policy or investing in one.
Additionally, even though malpractice is rare in the nursing field it is still a growing concern. Malpractice insurance is not only for practicing doctors, physicians, and surgeons; it is available to nurses as well. It is best to consider a policy because even the most dependable nurse can become a target in a malpractice suit. There are many...

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