- Why are laws, rules, and regulations needed for professional nursing practice?(readings p. 276-277)
- Explain the purpose of the Nurse Practice Act (NPA). (readings p. 278-281
- Explain the role of the State Boards of Nursing (SBN). (readings p. 281-282)
- What are the liability issues for a nurse who fails to raise the siderails of a patient after surgery and the patient falls out of bed? (readings p. 287-294)
Why are laws, rules, and regulations needed for professional nursing practice?
Laws and regulations are important in any professional practice where the professional deals with members of the public and has a particular responsibility towards the people. In nursing care, laws and regulations act to protect patients from risks that are highly eminent in healthcare. It is the nurse’s work to ensure that they follow all the laws and regulations in practice to minimize the risks that a patient is exposed to during treatment (readings p. 276-277). The laws protect the public from those professionals or practitioners unsafe or those that do not qualify to give services within the profession. Nursing is a regulated profession hence the confidence that stakeholders have in practice. Human life is a delicate issue and must be dealt with the utmost care, hence the laws and regulations in the profession.
Explain the purpose of the Nurse Practice Act (NPA).
The Nursing Practice Act came into existence in the early 1900s after the government and states realized the imminent risk if nurses were allowed to practice as freelance artists. Nurses back then did not need to be registered or attain the preferred training in nursing care. This was a public health issue. The State of North Carolina was the first to get a nurse practice act based on protecting the title of Registered Nurse and ensuring nurses were registered. The NPA is different for every state as they all have the responsibility to ensure that their citizens’ health is in good hands. The NPA promotes the safety and quality of care that a patient receives. The NPA aims to enforce the laws and acceptable standards in nursing practice and ensure that only competent nurses provide care to citizens (readings p. 278-281). The NPA, therefore: defines the scope of practice, sets the minimum qualifications that a nurse should have, determines the title and abbreviations nurses should use and provides disciplinary action when the need arises.
Explain the role of the State Boards of Nursing (SBN).
SBN are regulatory bodies responsible for ensuring that the nursing practice act is enforced and administered in respective jurisdictions. They protect the public from harm caused by incompetent professionals. The SBN also publicizes the law and regulations and expound on them. All the state nursing boards of nursing are responsible for evaluating the applications for nurses who qualify for licensure. The boards are responsible for renewing licenses and carrying out disciplinary actions on nursing professionals that go against the practice’s set laws and standards. The boards are also responsible for administering national nursing examinations that qualify nurses for licensure (readings p. 281-282).
What are the liability issues for a nurse who fails to raise the side rails after surgery, and the patient falls out of bed?
The nurse is responsible for the patient’s care during their length of treatment till the moment they are discharged or can take care of themselves. A nurse who fails to raise the rail and a patient falls off the bed is liable to malpractice charges. The nurses’ action often affects the patients as they are put in a position of responsibility and trust. Nurses should always act in the best interest of the patient. They should be fully informed of the risks that their patients are likely to face and the pitfalls to avoid during the process of nursing care (Shandell et al., 2018). Malpractice is one of the most common legal liability and concern for healthcare providers. The patient falls off the bed because of the nurses’ negligence. Negligence is treated as malpractice as it is the failure of a person to act in a manner that they should have acted in their position as professionals. The nurse is liable because of the negligence of omission, where she forgets to put up the rail leading to the patient falling off the bed and worsening their condition (readings p. 287-294).