Jump to content
2019 Nursing Salary Survey Read more... ×

Nurses Call the Governor of Tennessee

Nurses   (13,685 Views 422 Comments)
by Nurse Beth Nurse Beth, MSN (Advice Column) Writer Innovator Expert

Nurse Beth has 30 years experience as a MSN and works as a Nursing Professional Development Specialist.

331 Likes; 10 Followers; 81 Articles; 224,696 Visitors; 1,685 Posts

advertisement

You are reading page 27 of Nurses Call the Governor of Tennessee. If you want to start from the beginning Go to First Page.

HomeBound has 20 years experience.

291 Likes; 1 Follower; 733 Visitors; 149 Posts

11 minutes ago, Seaofclouds said:

If you are referring to Case #14C-4972 (4.5 million), it wasn't Vande. Here's the settlement information from that case: http://www.juryverdicts.net/YebuahVerdict.pdf

Thank you for the clarification. I saw it and was just...astounded that this just keeps on happening. Where a hospital settles with plaintiffs---right or wrong---and nobody is the wiser. Does it all have to rise to such shocking heights of incompetence before the public gets to know or that there is restitution, other than monetary?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

TriciaJ has 35 years experience as a RN and works as a Retired.

1,068 Likes; 5 Followers; 30,702 Visitors; 2,767 Posts

5 hours ago, TNnursejane said:

Yes, Ms Vaught made a terrible error but the issue comes down to she missed all of the safety points that were put into place. My question is why did she override the med when if it was ordered should have been in the patient's profile. If she had given Versed in the past, she would have known if did not have to be reconstituted as was the Vercromium that she administered. My concern is that if she is convicted and sentenced then it will change the whole "just" culture that we have been working on since the early 2000s. Nurses will not report errors anymore because they are afraid of the repercussions. The bottom line is that it could have been any of us. It has to do with the processes that went wrong. I'm sure that Ms Vaught did not do this maliciously. She should suffer the consequences such as losing her license and/or paying a fine but to be put in jail is going over the top.

If you read the previous thread here about this situation, and the CMS report (link is on page 14 of the previous thread) many of your above questions will be answered.    This person's actions fell far below basic standards of acceptable nursing practice.  That's why many of us are not calling it an "error" and no, it could not have been any of us.

I don't know if her intent was malicious or not.  That's because I don't know what circumstances would make me play so fast and loose with patient safety.  There's a time for solidarity and there's a time for accountability.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

TriciaJ has 35 years experience as a RN and works as a Retired.

1,068 Likes; 5 Followers; 30,702 Visitors; 2,767 Posts

5 hours ago, juan de la cruz said:

I was going by this statement:

 

Shouldn't they all be prosecuted criminally?

No, not all of them.  Not all errors rise to the level of criminality.  There has to be some distinction between errors and wilfully reckless behaviours.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

TriciaJ has 35 years experience as a RN and works as a Retired.

1,068 Likes; 5 Followers; 30,702 Visitors; 2,767 Posts

2 hours ago, HomeBound said:

Possible settlement from this case?

Nashville has a report that shows cases and settlements. Unfortunately, unless you have access to their version of LexusNexus, you cannot see the case filing.

It's a curious timing--and the incident happened Christmas Eve 2017. This settlement, quite a large one, happened just two months later.

The CMS report was complete in Nov 2018.

 

Cancelled post.

Edited by TriciaJ
Cancelled post

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1,054 Likes; 7 Followers; 21,192 Visitors; 2,673 Posts

8 hours ago, TriciaJ said:

I think this event was just before they rolled out Epic at Vandy.  Not clear what system they were using at the time.

They rolled out epic just weeks before this, Nov. 2017 per the report.

...one of the facts that stuck in my mind because that was the excuse given for why there wasn't even so much as documentation that any med was given. Nurse manager told her she didn't need to document it because their new system would "capture" it. 🙄

<just another one of those "this place is chaos" things that irked me...>

Edited by JKL33

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

76 Likes; 9,755 Visitors; 450 Posts

7 hours ago, Horseshoe said:

Where *I* would draw the line would be in intent and malice. Just because you are not put in prison does not mean you cannot be penalized very severely. But Tennessee clearly doesn't make that distinction; it's not up to me. 

A couple of years ago there was discussion on AllNurses about a school bus driver in Chattanooga, TN who was driving too fast for the road conditions, lost control on a curve, left the road and hit a tree.  Six children were killed. 

That bus driver was charged and convicted of 6 counts of vehicular homicide which is the equivalent charge to reckless homicide.  Both are involuntary homicide.  

He was charged because he did not act in the way a reasonable, prudent person would and that action caused a death.

This bus driver did not intend to cause harm.  He had no malice.  Should the only punishment be loss of his CDL? 

A truck driver lost part of his load on a highway.  (I don't remember where this happened.)  This resulted in the death of another person on the road. 

He was charged with vehicular homicide because safety standards require a truck driver to inspect his load before getting on the highway.  He did not load the trailer.  Someone else loaded it and didn't secure it properly.  If he had inspected his load before driving off, the accident wouldn't have happened and the other person would be alive

The trucker had no malice or intent.  Should the only punishment be loss of his CDL?

In New Jersey a school bus driver missed his exit while driving students on a field trip.  He attempted to make an illegal u-turn and the bus was hit.  A teacher and a student died.  He was charged with vehicular homicide because a reasonable, prudent person wouldn't have attempted the illegal u-turn.

The driver had no malice or intent.  Should the only punishment be loss of his CDL.

This nurse was a highly trained professional.  She bypassed not one, or two, or three, but many safety mechanisms that a reasonable, prudent nurse would not have done.  (Not even reading the name on the drug she pulled!)

Shouldn't a highly trained professional be held to at least the same standards a a truck driver and school bus driver?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
advertisement

juan de la cruz has 27 years experience as a MSN, RN, NP and works as a Adult Critical Care Nurse Practitioner.

522 Likes; 3 Followers; 8 Articles; 57,337 Visitors; 3,743 Posts

6 hours ago, Susie2310 said:

I believe that if a case meets the criteria for criminal prosecution after an appropriate investigation has taken place that it is not inappropriate that criminal charges are filed.  Each case is individual.  

See I  disagree with that and I already expressed my reasoning on my post you just responded to. I'm not going to keep blabbering the same thing.

6 hours ago, Susie2310 said:

 Risk is inherent in our profession as it is in other professions where public safety is at risk and where licensed professionals have responsibilities towards the public that include safety.

Those are actually some of my words and I have already expressed that the state BON's are tasked with upholding the safety of the public from those who are practicing nursing through standards and regulations. I believe that is adequate. 

6 hours ago, Susie2310 said:

I have never said that we must prosecute RV for the crime she has committed - please show me where I have used these words on this forum - I bring to your attention again that you are continuing to misquote me, and ask that you stop doing this.  If you continue to misquote me I will report your posts.  

Prosecute means to charge...well, that's what I think. She is charged with the crime of reckless homicide. She is about to stand on trial for these charges and will face a sentence if convicted. That's how I am following these legal lingo. Is that what you are asking me because I'm so confused with your posts? I believe your previous post support proceeding with the trial surrounding these charges.

You can continue discussing without threatening me about my posts since the mods read this thread and I'm sure they are following every single bit of what I'm saying. I don't need to post here on allnurses so I'm not afraid of being banned. I was also asked to be a Guide here. I actually like the conversations here but you are making it unpleasant for me to continue to participate. Actually, yes go ahead and report, that's your prerogative.

6 hours ago, Susie2310 said:

At this point the person in question has been charged with a criminal offense, not been convicted of a criminal offense.  Read my posts again - I have said a number of times that where a nurse's actions (or any licensed healthcare professional's actions) meet the criteria for being charged with a criminal offense that is is not inappropriate for that person to face these charges.  Yes, in Court.  I don't believe that is an intransigent position that signals black and white thinking.

I don't know why you put up such a defensive tone when I'm just expressing my opinion. Listen, I'm following this case and I understand fully that Nurse RV is not convicted of a crime and is just charged with a criminal offense at this point. Can you tell me if that has anything to do with anything I've said? I'm having such a difficult time understanding your posts actually because your points are so evasive and unclear to me.

6 hours ago, Susie2310 said:

I disagree with you that we will be setting ourselves up for more cover-ups if more cases that meet criteria for criminal prosecution go to Court, and I would say that greater oversight of health care facilities by regulatory agencies is necessary.

You can disagree. 

ETA: English is my second language so anyone please tell me if my posts are not making any sense.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

juan de la cruz has 27 years experience as a MSN, RN, NP and works as a Adult Critical Care Nurse Practitioner.

522 Likes; 3 Followers; 8 Articles; 57,337 Visitors; 3,743 Posts

1 hour ago, TriciaJ said:

No, not all of them.  Not all errors rise to the level of criminality.  There has to be some distinction between errors and wilfully reckless behaviours.

Where would that distinction be? I'm seriously wanting to know. Yes, Nurse RV's case is egregious, but are we sure there weren't any other cases just as egregious as hers that never made it to national news. Is it that egregious that there is no accounting for human error that can explain her actions? Was her willful recklessness a result of other factors we yet haven't heard about? I agree that she needs to face a person of authority, a judge if you will, in a civil trial just not in criminal court.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

juan de la cruz has 27 years experience as a MSN, RN, NP and works as a Adult Critical Care Nurse Practitioner.

522 Likes; 3 Followers; 8 Articles; 57,337 Visitors; 3,743 Posts

3 hours ago, Wuzzie said:

But we don’t know if they had intent. Maybe they were really rushed. Maybe staffing was bad. Maybe they didn’t know any better. They were young. They were new. There should have been safeguards in place. Oh, they overrode them well it’s not their fault.  Maybe they truly believed they were helping. Any of us could have pushed 2000MCG OF FENTANYL! They probably didn’t know that could kill a patient. 

I've heard of this case but only through the media. Is there a better source for the details? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

TriciaJ has 35 years experience as a RN and works as a Retired.

1,068 Likes; 5 Followers; 30,702 Visitors; 2,767 Posts

1 hour ago, juan de la cruz said:

Where would that distinction be? I'm seriously wanting to know. Yes, Nurse RV's case is egregious, but are we sure there weren't any other cases just as egregious as hers that never made it to national news. Is it that egregious that there is no accounting for human error that can explain her actions? Was her willful recklessness a result of other factors we yet haven't heard about? I agree that she needs to face a person of authority, a judge if you will, in a civil trial just not in criminal court.

Yes, not everything egregious gets treated as such.  Sometimes minor things get treated as egregious when many people would agree that they are not.  Many of us believe her behavioural choices were so egregious that they cannot be explained by human error.

These questions will be tried in a court of law.  The prosecution will likely have nurses testifying as to what a reasonably prudent nurse would do in her situation.  Those testimonies will help determine if her behaviours can be explained by human error or if she is indeed guilty of willful recklessness.

If she is convicted, will that deter the same kind of behaviour in others?  Hard to say because it's hard to prove a negative.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

juan de la cruz has 27 years experience as a MSN, RN, NP and works as a Adult Critical Care Nurse Practitioner.

522 Likes; 3 Followers; 8 Articles; 57,337 Visitors; 3,743 Posts

8 minutes ago, TriciaJ said:

Yes, not everything egregious gets treated as such.  Sometimes minor things get treated as egregious when many people would agree that they are not.  Many of us believe her behavioural choices were so egregious that they cannot be explained by human error.

These questions will be tried in a court of law.  The prosecution will likely have nurses testifying as to what a reasonably prudent nurse would do in her situation.  Those testimonies will help determine if her behaviours can be explained by human error or if she is indeed guilty of willful recklessness.

If she is convicted, will that deter the same kind of behaviour in others?  Hard to say because it's hard to prove a negative.

Yes, this is a go at this point and she is facing trial. I'm hoping just like everyone else that we do get the answers we want. Given the kind of publicity she is getting and the go fund me page that is generating monetary support, I hope that lawyers on both sides will strive for upholding the truth and justice will be served. 

If anything, this case will make nurses more aware of paralytics, at least the ones who are following it. Next time, it's going to be another drug that is going to be mixed up with the wrong drug by an inattentive nurse. We need to continue to strive for ways to overcome the pull of human error from providing safe care to patients.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

NurseCard has 13 years experience as a ADN and works as a RN.

140 Likes; 3 Followers; 2 Articles; 34,903 Visitors; 2,844 Posts

Late to the party, here...

I'm on the fence as to whether or not the woman deserves to be charged criminally... I stay on the fence about a LOT of issues, unfortunately...

I do lean to the side of "she should not be charged".

I personally THINK that she will not be charged, or that if she does make it to court, the DA will lose.  Here's why:

1.  I think the evidence will be overwhelming that the nurse was working under tremendous pressure and that the working environment was all in all, unsafe. 

2.  She was doing a JOB.  She was working. 

3.  The family did not even want charges brought.  I don't think a jury is going to convict her. 

Just my humble opinion.

Cathy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
×