Jury Awards $1.5 M in Pain Case ...excessive? - page 2

When I come across precedent setting Health Care ethics cases, I thought I would share this here: Jury Awards $1.5 M in Pain Case BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) — A jury awarded $1.5... Read More

  1. by   Hellllllo Nurse
    As a former acute care inpt hospice nurse, I was distressed to see some of our pts suffer when they retained their primary docs, who were not educated on proper pain and sx mgmt.

    There were times when I would beg a doc to increase a pts pain med orders, but they would not listen. In these cases, I would have to call our med director in the middle of the noc and convince him to over-ride the pcp's orders. This made some docs my "enemies", but I felt I had to sacrifice my working relationship w/ some docs in order to get pts the relief they required.

    There were times when I felt very pressured to give pain meds that were not ordered to be able to provide the pts' the relief they needed.

    Sometimes, we got admits who were in crisis due to lack of pain and sx mgmt. We received a few pts who were screaming and crying in pain. I cannot express what a relief it was to be able to give one MSO4 shot after another and finally see a look of relief and peace in the pts' eyes. I think I was almost as relieved as the pts.

    Fortunately, we had very liberal standing orders for pain and sx mgmt. The only time pain control was a problem was when a DPOA family member refused to allow proper pain and sx mgmt, or when a pt retained a pcp who was ignorant of comfort measures.

    Being able to relieve pts' suffering and allow them to actually live the life they had left was very rewarding.

    I agree with another poster that many docs will not adequately address pain control issues until they are threatened with law suits.

    I don't know who said it, but the following quote expresses my sentiments very well:

    "No greater good can man attain, than to alleviate another's pain."