Source:

Nursing2015

April 2003, Volume 33 Number 4 , p 10 - 12 [FREE]

Author

  • Penny Simpson Brooke APRN, MS, JD

Abstract

© 2003 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc. Volume 33(4)             April 2003             p 10–12 Is an honest nurse a liable nurse? [LETTERS]

Brooke, Penny Simpson APRN, MS, JD

The comments appearing in this column are excerpted from readers' correspondence. Send your letter, complete mailing address, and credentials to: Letters Editor, Nursing2003, 1111 Bethlehem Pike, P.O. Box 908, Springhouse, PA 19477 or E-mail to nursing@lww.com. Please include your daytime telephone number .

I'm very aware of the real-life staffing problems nurses struggle with every day. But because I'm asked to give advice from a legal viewpoint, I can't ignore the basic assumptions of risk management when responding to a reader's question. If I did, I'd be doing a great disservice to the next nurse who's fired for insubordination for ignoring facility policy, or who someday ...

 

I'm very aware of the real-life staffing problems nurses struggle with every day. But because I'm asked to give advice from a legal viewpoint, I can't ignore the basic assumptions of risk management when responding to a reader's question. If I did, I'd be doing a great disservice to the next nurse who's fired for insubordination for ignoring facility policy, or who someday hears her words turned against her in court.

 

I commend any nurse who takes steps to report and remedy unsafe conditions in her facility. If she's exhausted administrative remedies and nothing changes, perhaps she should look for an employer who's more responsive to the needs of nurses and patients. Most employers face these dilemmas, but some are more committed to helping nurses practice safely than others.