Patient Abandonment in NM

  1. 0
    As a first-year RN, I was working for a home health agency in hospice. My immediate supervisor was very condescending, very rude, and talked to me like I was stupid. She treated me like a child. After putting up with her attitude, and belittling me, and being overwhelmed/swamped with patients, being on-call, and paperwork for six months, I decided to quit on the following Monday. I updated ALL of my travel charts, gave full report to my immediate supervisor, and handed over all paperwork. All paperwork regarding patients were complete. Could they get me for patient abandonment?
    Last edit by YouGotItNurse on Nov 29, '12
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  3. 12 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    Did she say she's going to?

    Sorry, but I don't really know the answer to that.

    I was just looking on the web because I'm curious to know the answer to that too and I found this:

    The nurse-patient relationship begins when the nurse accepts responsibility for providing nursing care based upon a written or oral report of the patient needs. It ends when that responsibility has been transferred to another nurse along with communication detailing the patient’s needs

    I'm sure there are more official and reliable sources, but from the above source, it sounds like you transferred responsibility. I know for sure how it works in a hospital setting, but I'm not sure how it works in a home health setting.
    Last edit by Esme12 on Nov 30, '12 : Reason: TOS/removed link
  5. 0
    The definition can vary somewhat from state to state, here is the NM definition: http://www.nursingald.com/Uploaded%5...5CNM032004.pdf (page 4, upper left of page).
  6. 0
    Quote from MunoRN
    The definition can vary somewhat from state to state, here is the NM definition: http://www.nursingald.com/Uploaded\N...s\NM032004.pdf (page 4, upper left of page).
    This is from your link:

    Patient abandonment occurs when the nurse has
    accepted the patient assignment thus
    establishing a nurse-patient relationship and
    then severed the relationship/disengaged from
    the relationship without giving reasonable notice
    to a qualified person who can make
    arrangements for the continuation of nursing
    care by others. This is to be distinguished from
    employment abandonment, such as, but not
    limited to, contract issues; no call, no show;
    refusal to work mandatory overtime; refusal to
    float to unfamiliar areas; or resignation from a
    position. The board has no jurisdiction over
    employment issues.

    I'm still not clear if what she did is patient abandonment though because I don't know what is considered "accepting the assignment" or "reasonable notice" in a home health, and specifically in a hospice situation. I know there's more autonomy in a home health environment and have no idea how that works as far as reporting to a supervisor, etc. I know if you work at a hospital then you just don't show up so you didn't accept the assignment and therefore it falls into a no call/no show or employment issue. So, you pretty much have to walk out of the hospital during the middle of a shift for it to be considered patient abandonment.
  7. 0
    Thank u all for the reponses. No, she didn't say she was going to. A friend of mine pointed out the term "patient abandonment" and got me all worried. I just wanted to know if that was something they could do...
  8. 0
    If you quit before your shift is over, even if you hand it over to someone else, yes they can report you, at least in my state they can, and they did just last week.
  9. 1
    It seems like you handed them off properly, but quitting without notice is never a good play.
    ktwlpn likes this.
  10. 0
    I was off work on that Monday I decided to quit so it wasn't like I did a no call no show or I quit right as soon as I arrived to work
  11. 0
    I coulda handled the employment part better as far as giving proper notice so yes, that part looks bad.
  12. 3
    Well, lesson learned. I think since you did not start a new day after your day off it will not be abandonment. You will be ok. Just be honest in interviews and let them know you realize you should have handled it differently and that you will in the future.
    Guttercat, nursel56, and YouGotItNurse like this.


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