Legal aspects

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Legal aspects

  1. 1. Legal Aspects of Nursing Presented By Christine Hicks
  2. 2. Topics <ul><li>Introduction </li></ul><ul><li>General Legal Concepts </li></ul><ul><li>Legal Basis for Nursing </li></ul><ul><li>Legal Role of the Nurse </li></ul><ul><li>Ethical Issues </li></ul><ul><li>Ethical Responsibilities </li></ul>
  3. 3. Introduction <ul><li>Importance of Law to the Nurse </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Nurses have more responsibility </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increased numbers of Advanced Practice Nurses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Law is there to assist in the decision-making process involved in nursing practice </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><ul><li>Law is there for the protection of nursing practice </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Law is there for the identification of the risk of liability </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>Effects of Law on Nursing Practice </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Legal Basis for Nursing Practice--Licensure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Guidelines for Care </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Who is the Client--Age of Consent </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Emergency--Good Samaritan Act </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Abused Clients--Criminal Laws </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Use of Restraints </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Dying Patient’s wishes--Advanced Directives </li></ul></ul></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><ul><li>Guidelines for Care (Continued) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Confidentiality--Invasion of Privacy </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Documentation </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Incident Reports </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Role of Nurse as Witness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Witness in Criminal Cases </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Expert Witness </li></ul></ul></ul>
  7. 7. <ul><ul><li>Negligence & Malpractice </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Criminal Activity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Assault </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Battery </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Diversion of Narcotics </li></ul></ul></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>Contemporary Legislative Issues </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Prescriptive Authority </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Delegation to Unlicensed Personnel </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Unsafe Staffing in the Workplace </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Contemporary Roles for Nurses </li></ul>
  9. 9. General Legal Aspects <ul><li>Definition of Law </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Comes from the word which means “that which is laid down or fixed” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Law is a rule or standard of human conduct established & enforced by authority, society, or custom </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><ul><li>Law is established for the welfare of society </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Law is not stagnant--changes when society’s directs a change </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Public Law <ul><li>One type of law is Public Law which deals with an individual’s relationship to the state </li></ul><ul><li>Sources include Constitutional, Administrative & Criminal </li></ul><ul><li>These Sources occur on both the Federal & State level </li></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>Constitutional Law </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Set of basic laws that defines & limits the powers of government </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Nurse maintains rights as an individual </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Constitutional Rights, Civil Rights, State Constitution </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. <ul><li>Administrative Law </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Developed by groups who are appointed to governmental administrative agencies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Food, Drug & Cosmetic Act; Social Security Act; Nurse Practice Act </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. <ul><li>Criminal Law </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Acts or offences against the welfare or safety of the public </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Controlled Substance Act; Criminal Codes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>(See Page 230) </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. Civil Law <ul><li>The second type of law is Civil Law which deals with crimes against a person or persons in such legal matters as: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Contracts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Torts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Protective Reporting Law </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. <ul><li>Contract Law is the enforcement of agreements among private individuals </li></ul><ul><li>Elements of: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Promise </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mutual Understanding </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Compensation </li></ul></ul>
  17. 17. <ul><li>Employment Contracts is an example of contract law under civil law </li></ul>
  18. 18. <ul><li>Tort Law is the enforcement of duties & rights among independent of contractual agreements. It is a civil wrong committed on a person or property stemming from either a direct invasion of some legal right of the person, infraction of some public duty, or the violation of some private obligation by which damages accrue to the person. </li></ul>
  19. 19. <ul><li>Examples of Tort Law include: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Negligence & Malpractice </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Assault & Battery </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>False Imprisonment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Restraints or Seclusion </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Invasion of Privacy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Defamation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fraud </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. Negligence & Malpractice <ul><li>Terms </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Liability is an obligation one has incurred or might incur thru any act or failure to act </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Malpractice refers to the behavior of a professional person’s wrongful conduct, improper discharge of professional duties, or failure to meet the standards of acceptable care which result in harm to another person </li></ul></ul>
  21. 21. <ul><li>Terms </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Negligence(breach of duty) is the failure of an individual to provide care that a reasonable person would ordinarily use in a similar circumstance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Defendant is the person being sued </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Plaintiff is the party who initiates the lawsuit that seeks damages </li></ul></ul>
  22. 22. <ul><li>Proof of Liability depends on: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Duty </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Breach of duty </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Injury </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Causation </li></ul></ul>
  23. 23. <ul><li>Assault & Battery </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Assault is the intentional & unlawful offer to touch a person in an offensive , insulting or physically intimidating manner </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Battery is the touching of another person without the person’s consent </li></ul></ul>
  24. 24. <ul><li>Protective/Reporting Laws are sometimes considered criminal laws based on state classification </li></ul><ul><li>Examples include: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Americans with Disabilities Act </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Good Samaritan Act </li></ul></ul>
  25. 25. Legal Basis for Nursing <ul><li>Nurse Practice Act </li></ul><ul><li>Standards of Care </li></ul>
  26. 26. Legal Role of the Nurse <ul><li>Provider of Service (p.234) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ensure that client receives competent, safe, & holistic care </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Render care by “standards of reasonable, prudent person” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Supervise/evaluate that which has been delegated </li></ul></ul>
  27. 27. <ul><li>Provider of Service (continued) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Documentation of care </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Maintain clinical competency </li></ul></ul>

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