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Nurse Beth Nurse Beth, MSN (Advice Column) Writer Innovator Expert Nurse Verified

Nurse Charged With Homicide

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Nurse Charged With Homicide

  1. 1. Should Radonda Vaught, the nurse who gave a lethal dose of Vecuronium to patient at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, be charged with reckless homicide?

    • She should not have been charged
      358
    • She deserved to be charged
      104

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Radonda Vaught, a 35 year old nurse who worked at the University of Vanderbilt University Medical Center, has been indicted on charges of reckless homicide. Read Nurse Gives Lethal Dose of Vecuronium

Radonda is the nurse who mistakenly gave Vecuronium (a paralytic) to a patient instead of Versed. The patient died. 

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I disagree with these changes. This was a tragedy, a horrible mistake.  Take away her nursing license but don't destroy her life. 

The family has said that the woman would have forgiven her. 

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It’s a dangerous and slippery slope. I agree with Emergent- she should lose her license.

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41 minutes ago, Nurse Beth said:

has been indicted on charges of reckless homicide

Would this happen to a doctor if a fatal mistake was made?

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I have a feeling that someone with clout, associated with the hospital,  is behind this. Someone who perhaps plays golf with the chief prosecutor?

How convenient,  to divert attention away from the hospital's deficiencies by vilifying this unfortunate woman.  

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I live in Tennessee so this really hits home hard. Vanderbilt is our closest burn center. I have mixed feelings about this case, on one hand, vecuronium and versed are two completely different things; and from what I remember back in my ER and CCU days, I think paralytics such as that are clearly labeled with warnings. HOWEVER, I have compassion for her, because I wonder what her day that day was like. We all know what it is like to have the day from hell where you are short staffed, overloaded with acutely ill patients, and management is over here trying to push even more on you. Perhaps she was overwhelmed, perhaps she had a patient who was starting to go downhill, a new admit, and had to get this one down to radiology all at the same time. Its easy to make mistakes when we are at our wit's end. It was a horrible tragedy, but I'm not sure I agree with the charges of reckless homicide. Especially when these charges are brought forth by individuals who likely have never spent a day working as a nurse. 

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Perhaps she wasn't fully trained to be a "help all" nurse. She wasn't familiar with Versed, so clearly a lack of experience. 

Meaning...why did Vanderbilt put her in this position? Shame.

 

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She hasn't even been a nurse for 4 full years. This happened two years ago. She was still so new. I am horrified by this, I think it's too much. I am sure she lives with this every day as it is. I hope she is getting the support she needs to get through this. 

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If I had known that this was possible, I would not have become a nurse. 

In nursing school we went over a case, where the nurse gave a med by the wrong route, which ended up in the patient's  death. Not only did she not get falsely charged with murder, but she kept her license, she kept her job, and became a champion of prevention in the hospital.

 

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1 hour ago, Emergent said:

I disagree with these changes. This was a tragedy, a horrible mistake.  Take away her nursing license but don't destroy her life. 

The family has said that the woman would have forgiven her. 

I disagree with the charges -- I think that's what you meant.  I think that taking away her nursing license may destroy her life.  Not to the extent that prison would destroy her life, and probably not even to the extent that this horrible error has already destroyed her life.  

It was a mistake, a tragic, horrible mistake.  But it wasn't murder.

I hope that we all would have some compassion for this nurse.  We have all had horrible days when we were struggling just to keep everyone alive until 7:35.  Any one of us could have made a mistake that could kill a patient.  I've seen Versed in the valium cubby, and dobutamine in the dopamine cubby.  I've seen Heparin 1:10,000 in the cubby for heparin flushes. Anyone can make a mistake, all of us do make mistakes.  This nurse has probably been beating herself up since the day it happened, she's had to read the unkind and the horrible comments on the internet, and now she has to defend herself against homocide charges.  

I feel for the patient and her family.  It would have been a horrible way to die. But I feel for the nurse, too.

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Yes, of course I meant "charges". Dang it all, posting on my phone after a glass of wine. 

 

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3 minutes ago, Emergent said:

Yes, of course I meant "charges". Dang it all, posting on my phone after a glass of wine. 

 

Red or white? 😂

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