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August 2003, Volume 33 Number 8 , p 18 - 20



© 2003 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc. Volume 33(8)             August 2003             p 18–20 Fast track to legal liability [ADVICE, P.R.N.: STANDARDS OF CARE]

I'm an RN in an outpatient unit in a small general hospital that employs CRNAs but no anesthesiologists. The outpatient area consists of small rooms along a central hall with the nurses' station in the center.

The CRNA nurse-manager has decided to fast-track certain postoperative patients from the procedure room to the outpatient unit, bypassing the postanesthesia care unit. These patients include those recovering from epidural sedation who are moving their legs and some general anesthesia patients.

The outpatient unit has minimal monitoring capabilities, and none of the RNs are trained in postanesthesia care. Because we're usually busy in rooms admitting or discharging patients, we'd have trouble watching ...

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