Legal aspects of nursing

Nursing Students Student Assist


I live in the US, and sometimes I think that we need a class in nursing school just to go over all the laws, regulations, rights, etc, relating to nursing and patients. Am I crazy? We went over the state Nurse Practice Act my first semester and learned a little bit of other stuff, but there just seems to be so much to know regarding legal issues they don't teach you, and that's important too. I understand there's a lot more to learn in the program involving actual patient care and everything, but when we have ethical-legal questions on case study assignments, I realize that I really don't know much in this area, and it's obviously something we need to know. I mean it's one thing for us to go off on our own and read information, but to be presented with multiple scenarios which may be gray areas, situations that we might not think of, and being tested on applied knowledge before we find ourselves actually in that situation is something I feel like I should review. I know that certain things are different from state to state and institution to institution, much as I'd like to be able to competently provide care, I'd like to know my legal responsibilities, limits and rights in everything I do as a nurse.

Anyway....long story short: my question is since a class isn't an option (well I assume not, I don't know what the classes will be in the last semester), are there at least any good ethical-legal nursing textbooks that I could read on my own, or in your opinion do you feel those aren't worth a buy? I didn't see anything like that at my local bookstore. Or does anyone know of any online quiz type activities that go over case scenarios and ask you what you should do? etc.

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