Nurses are an important and integral part of the hospital staff and the extent and significance of their job is often taken for granted. While cases of medical malpractice often involve the mistakes of doctors, surgeons, or specialists, there are also circumstances where if a nurse may have made a mistake, leading to costly consequences. Here are three of the most common areas where nursing negligence occurs.
Nurses oftentimes will perform routine procedures such as taking a patient’s vitals, starting IV’s, adjusting medication, or drawing blood for tests. Because they do many of the same procedures numerous times a day, it’s easier to stop paying attention and make a mistake. Another important job of nurses, is to closely monitor a patient’s condition and report even small changes. Failing to track any changes in a patient’s condition could lead to injury.
Usually part of the nurse’s routine procedures, administering medication is a very detail-oriented task. Doctors will adjust dosage levels and may add or change a patient’s medication numerous times during their time at the hospital. It is a serious mistake if a nurse delivers the incorrect amount, or administers the incorrect medication. As you can imagine, not receiving the proper treatment when you need it can worsen your condition.
Lastly, when a nurse is administering medication and performing procedures they must carefully document everything. Some of the things that are documented include the patient’s condition at the time, the type and dose of medications administered, and any important changes. It is up to the nurse to correctly document everything, and any errors could lead to mistakes in the patient’s treatment.
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