Canadian student nurse looking for legal responsibilities of the american nurses

  1. Hey
    I am a Canadian second year student nurse and i am need some help finding information regarding legal liability, negligence and the proffesional association's role in supporting a nurse in legal situations in the United States. Also would it be different in a private vs. a public hospital?? Any information or tips to finding the information would be very much appreciated
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    About breazy

    Joined: Jan '05; Posts: 1

    5 Comments

  3. by   fergus51
    I imagine part of that would depend on if it's a unionized environment or not, but the US is very similar to Canada. We have to practice according to facility policies and accepted safe practices within our scope as set by state boards of nursing. You might try looking at state boards sites or looking at union sites. If a complaint is made to the BON, they will investigate. They are not there to help the nurse. The nurse may get help from a private lawyer or a union rep.
  4. by   elkpark
    I would be happy to try to answer your questions if you could please be more specific.

    Fergus is right (as usual :chuckle -- hey there, girlfriend!) The state Boards of Nursing exist to regulate the practice of nursing within each state and protect the public. There are professional organizations, like the constituent chapters of the ANA (American Nurses Association) and organizations representing the many specialties within nursing, that advocate for nurses, but they typically do not get involved in individual nurses' legal situations. Some nurses in the US belong to collective bargaining units (unions), which represent and support them in lots of different types of "problem" situations, but I don't have any personal experience with that, so I can't say more than that.

    Many nurses in the US carry individual professional liability (malpractice) insurance, and many do not. There are several threads on that topic here at allnurses that you could search for and read to find out more about people's opinions and experiences regarding professional liability insurance.

    I have worked in both public and private hospitals in the US and am not aware of any difference between them in terms of legal issues for nurses.

    If you have specific questions and want to post them here or PM me, I would be happy to try to answer them. There is also a Legal Nurse Consultant forum here, and they may be able to help you with info you are looking for, also.
  5. by   fergus51
    I should say I find nurses in the US MUCH more concerned about the prospect of being sued. It's one trend I don't want to see north of the border

    (Hey Elkpark!
  6. by   SmilingBluEyes
    That would also depend upon what state specifically in which you choose to practice. You would need to write that State's Board of Nursing for specifics.
  7. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Quote from fergus51
    I should say I find nurses in the US MUCH more concerned about the prospect of being sued. It's one trend I don't want to see north of the border

    (Hey Elkpark!
    worried with good reason...thanks to our insurance companies and lawyers.....

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