Chap 7 Legal implications of nursing
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What type of law encompasses nursing?
What is a statutory law?
- State laws.
- Nurse Practice Act is a statutory law
What is a common law?
law that evolved from accumulated judiciary decisions
What issues does Federal Legislation cover in healthcare?
Medicare and Medicaid
What issues does state legislation cover in healthcare?
- Scope of practice
- Nursing educational requirements
- Composition and authority of board of nursing
What issues does the board of nursing cover in healthcare?
- Medication administration
- Unprofessional conduct
What issues does the healthcare institution cover in healthcare?
- Clinical procedures (dressing change)
- Policies specific to the institution
- Personnel and employment policies
What is credentialing?
the ways in which professional competence is ensured and maintained
What are the three processes used for credentialing in nursing?
What is accreditation?
the process by which and educational institution is evaluated
What is licensure?
the process by which the state determines a candidate meets certain minimum requirements
What is certification?
a process by which a person who has met certain criteria established by a nongovernmental association is granted recognition in a specified practice area
What is a tort?
intentional or unintentional acts of wrongdoing
What are some examples of Intentional torts?
- Assault and battery
- invasion of privacy
- False imprisonment
What is assault?
a threat or attempt to make bodily contact with another person without their consent.
What is battery?
willful, angry and violent or negligent touching of another person's body or clothes or anything attached to or held by the person
What is defamation?
- derogatory remarks about another that diminish the other parties reputation
- Libel - written
- Slander - verbal
What is false imprisonment?
- retention or prevention of the movement of another person.
- restraints or involuntary hospital stays
What is fraud?
willful and purposeful misrepresentation that could cause, or has caused, loss or harm to a person or property.
What are some examples of unitentional torts?
- Negligence and Malpractice
- Elements of liability
- Standards of care
What is negligence?
performing an act that a reasonably prudent person under similar circumstances would not do or failing to perform a task that a reasonably prudent person under similar circumstances would do.
What is malpractice?
What are the 4 elements of liability?
- Breach of Duty
What is the definition of Duty as an element of liability?
- an obligation to use due care as defined by the standard of care for a nurse-patient relationship.
- what a reasonably prudent nurse would do
What is the definition of Breach of Duty as an element of liability?
failure to meet the standard of care
What is the definition of Causation as an element of liability?
showing that the breach of duty caused an injury
What is the definition of Damages as an element of liability?
the actual harm or injury done to the patient.
What are standards of care?
- What a reasonably prudent person under similar circumstances would or would not have done.
- Different for each specialty
- Set forth by the state's Nurse Practice Act
What is a fact witness?
someone with firsthand knowledge of the incident.
What is an expert witness?
witness called to explain what happened based on the chart and to give opinions on the event
What are the four parts of informed consent?
What are the four things a patient must be informed of for full disclosure?
- Nature of the procedure
- Risks and benefits
- Alternatives (including non-action)
- The fact that no outcomes are guaranteed
How can you be sure a pt comprehends informed consent?
they can correctly repeat procedure in their own words
What is competence in regard to informed consent?
a patient/surrogate must understand the information required, able to reason within their personal values, communicate a preference, knows the pt's wished to the extent that is possible and is free from undue emotional stress and conflict of interest
What is voluntariness in regard to informed consent?
- The pt is agreeing or declining care of their own free will
- Care has been taken to avoid manipulation and coercive influences
What is a sentinel event?
an unexpected occurance involving death or serious physical or psychological injury, or the risk thereof.
What is a Never Event?
Extremely rare medical errors that should never happen to a patient.
Are nurses required to report abuse?
- yes, nurses are ethically and legally responsible to report known or suspected abuse in patients of all ages, sex, etc.
- They are protected from suits from erroneously filled reports done in good faith.
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