Hey fellow nurses/nursing students! I need your opinion!
Do you believe nurse's are required to provide care to the patient's family member. Are family member's an additional patient of the nurses?
*** This is for the purposes of a school assignment***
Absolutely not. This ideology has the potential to create major liability issues. I get there are many forms of "care" one may provide to a family member. Some cases may seem so simple and innocent, however it only takes one time to have a poor outcome and you're screwed. Obviously, in event of an emergency medical situation, you will act differently since you are now covered under the good samaritan law. Therefore, if a person is not an active patient with signed consents or is not having a medical emergency, I would refrain from providing any physical nursing care to that person. However, patient/family education and information are "free to the public" in my opinion. Never hesitate to educate whenever you feel the need. In many cases, this is your most important form of patient care.
Hope this answers your question.