Honesty in the medical office

  1. Okay, a little background here. I was attending school, following my dream of becoming a nurse, when a bump in the road landed me back at the front desk for an orthopedic surgeon I worked for. I still intend to finish school for nursing but will have to wait a little while.

    The problem: One of the ladies I work with is fairly new to this office, we have no nurse, nor the Dr. believe he needs one, but this lady likes to "pretend" she is a nurse. When patients call and ask for a nurse she replies "I can help you", thus leading patients to believe she is nurse. She does other things that leads patients to believe that she is a nurse, which just infuriates me. :angryfire I have far more education than she does, and even I wouldn't allow patients to believe that I am a nurse.

    Just curious of what, if any, legal ramifications (sp?) there might be in her actions and I was also wondering what true nurses would think of this behavior.

    Well, if you feel compelled to answer, I would appreciate it.

    Heather
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  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   meownsmile
    I feel she is misrepresenting herself by omission. And depending on the patient and the questions they are asking can be at least dangerous, although dont know about illegal. If she continues, eventually the doctor will have a patient tell him what this person told them and he will deal with her. Depending on how much information/suggestions she is giving, the doctor will cut her off at the knees. Let's just hope she isnt dishing out medical information that might harm. There is a fine line and she may just trip over it.
  4. by   traumaRUs
    Its called misrepresentation and can sometims be construed as practicing nursing without a license.
  5. by   suzanne4
    If she is at all saying that she is the nurse, she is practicing without a license and can have criminal charges brought against her. The doctor needs to be aware of this because it can have legal ramifications for him also.
  6. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Quote from suzanne4
    If she is at all saying that she is the nurse, she is practicing without a license and can have criminal charges brought against her. The doctor needs to be aware of this because it can have legal ramifications for him also.

    ABSOLUTELY!!! she needs to stop this pronto!
  7. by   Shed13911
    WOW, somebody better warn the doc because he could get in big trouble if he knows about it and does nothing, he could be held liable too!
  8. by   SnowymtnRN
    UNLESS the doctor deems her his office nurse. If so, she's practicing under his license, so anything she says or does is a reflection of him and can come back on HIM. Its completely legal if that's what she's doing, if she's doing it without his knowledge tho then i agree its misrepresentation. Sucks doesn't it???
  9. by   MikeinSD
    Ok alittle advice from someone (of course advice is what you pay for it)older and wiser (ok older). If she is actually stating she is a "nurse" or are the patients assuming she is one? If their assuming she's a nurse, than its her power trip. If she's saying she's a nurse that's a whole new bag of worms. I agree it could very well be her bosses liscense on the line. Talk with him or her supervisor.

    P.S. go back and get that RN behind your name. I was in her shoe's, people assumed I was a nurse (some times the doctor) when I was only an Medical Assistant. Now I "RN" one...

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