Radonda Vaught Sentenced

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by tnbutterfly - Mary tnbutterfly - Mary, BSN, RN (Admin) Educator Columnist Innovator Expert Nurse

Specializes in Peds, Med-Surg, Disaster Nsg, Parish Nsg.

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Been there,done that, ASN, RN

Has 33 years experience. 6,878 Posts

I am on the fence post. She gave the wrong med and walked away. Giving any heavy duty med, a prudent nurse would stay and observe the reaction.

I was ordered to give Versed. It was not approved to administer on my unit.  I discussed that with the doctor and supervision. I stated I will only administer if I have coverage to stay and observe. 

I believe Radonda got off easy.

hppygr8ful, ASN, RN, EMT-I

Specializes in Psych, Addictions, SOL (Student of Life). Has 20 years experience. 4 Articles; 4,573 Posts

9 hours ago, ThePrincessBride said:

Her license is gone and her reputation is ruined. You can't practice without a license so these charges were unnecessary. 

In some cases I would tend to agree with you and if this had been the tragic result of a med error I might feel differently. Rodonda testified that she was not tired, did not feel overworked or rushed and did not lack familiarity with the role she was working that day. Still she willingly and purposely by-passed 11 safety protocols, failed to read the label of the medication she was giving and then failed to monitor her patient for effectiveness. Her Victim died a senseless terrible death fully aware that she was suffocating and unable to call for help. She then tried to cover up her actions and was only brought to justice after the fact due to a criminal complaint to the Tennessee board of inquiry.  Regular nurses who practice safely have nothing to fear from this precedent. 

Hppy

Freckledkorican, MSN, APRN

Specializes in MSN, FNP-BC. 75 Posts

On 5/15/2022 at 9:49 AM, Emergent said:

I read on the Nurse's with Cards facebook post about this. I'm surprised at how many people there want RaDonna to get her license back. 

Ms. Vaught should never get her license back. I read a timeline of what happened that tragic day. https://www.freshrn.com/radonda-vaught-trial/

Look at what occurred at 2:59 pm. She typed "VE" and the medication did not come up. At that moment, she should've thought, "Ah, must be under the generic name.", then typed in "midazolam". Her actions just worsen after that first mistake.

Edited by Freckledkorican

juan de la cruz, MSN, RN, NP

Specializes in APRN, Adult Critical Care, General Cardiology. Has 30 years experience. 9 Articles; 4,338 Posts

Criminal charges for nurses who have been proven to be negligent is quite rare. There are only 2 other prior cases before RV. They both didn't end in jail time for the accused. I think the same lesson can be learned from RV's case. I am at peace with the final outcome. I am not at peace that Vanderbilt's accountability was never brought up but that's being unrealistic. 

https://www.journalofnursingregulation.com/article/S2155-8256(15)30365-3/fulltext

 

 

Wuzzie

4,845 Posts

Thank you for the link Juan. That's what I've been saying all along. This is NOT the seminal event that people are making it out to be. 

My suggestion to all the nurses who are afraid because of this...read the damn vial! 

juan de la cruz, MSN, RN, NP

Specializes in APRN, Adult Critical Care, General Cardiology. Has 30 years experience. 9 Articles; 4,338 Posts

7 minutes ago, Wuzzie said:

Thank you for the link Juan. That's what I've been saying all along. This is NOT the seminal event that people are making it out to be. 

My suggestion to all the nurses who are afraid because of this...read the damn vial! 

If you're interested, there is a very similar case in Florida in 2011 that didn't even garner the national attention that RV's case got. The DA was not involved and it was the decedent's family that sued. It did not lead to the nurse getting criminally charged.

https://www.local10.com/news/2011/11/16/lethal-injection-drug-wrongly-given-to-hospital-patient/

 

Freckledkorican, MSN, APRN

Specializes in MSN, FNP-BC. 75 Posts

1 hour ago, juan de la cruz said:

I am not at peace that Vanderbilt's accountability was never brought up but that's being unrealistic.

Yes! Swept their part under the rug. Just focus on the nurse. Nothing to see over here.

Emergent, RN

Specializes in ER. Has 29 years experience. 2 Articles; 4,012 Posts

10 hours ago, Freckledkorican said:

Yes! Swept their part under the rug. Just focus on the nurse. Nothing to see over here.

Vanderbilts biggest crime here was the cover-up. The death of the victim rests solely on the shoulders of RV.

 

juan de la cruz, MSN, RN, NP

Specializes in APRN, Adult Critical Care, General Cardiology. Has 30 years experience. 9 Articles; 4,338 Posts

I know the issues here have been beaten to death but there were system failures at Vanderbilt at the time...they were switching to an EMR that was not sync'ing with their automated medication dispensing system. Nurses were being asked to override meds per RV (though again, that fact alone would have made a nurse be more extra careful knowing that the accuracy of the med pulled rest solely on the nurse).

Also, where I work, even before this case, nurses always ask us providers on all step-down units when a patient leaves the unit for an EMR order for the level of monitoring required. If there are no nurses available to transport and offer that level of monitoring, the test is cancelled especially if it's not urgent (as was in this case).

I understand the patient was in the ICU but has been downgraded to step-down while waiting for a bed outside the ICU. I almost feel that nurses where I work make sure the providers are held to that assessment. I would have made sure the patient was monitored by a nurse knowing that I had also ordered for Versed. 

Tweety, BSN, RN

Specializes in Med-Surg, Trauma, Ortho, Neuro, Cardiac. Has 30 years experience. 31,847 Posts

I think perhaps being found guilty and convicted of the crime, never being able to practice nursing ever again without jail time is enough.  

Vanderbilt settled out of court, so they didn't necessarily get away with anything.  But by settling out of court with the victims family they avoided the ugliness that RV had to go through.  She didn't have that option.  

Edited by Tweety

Freckledkorican, MSN, APRN

Specializes in MSN, FNP-BC. 75 Posts

1 hour ago, Tweety said:

I think perhaps being found guilty and convicted of the crime, never being able to practice nursing ever again without jail time is enough.  

Vanderbilt settled out of court, so they didn't necessarily get away with anything.  But by settling out of court with the victims family they avoided the ugliness that RV had to go through.  She didn't have that option.  

https://hospitalwatchdog.org/vanderbilts-role-in-the-death-of-patient-charlene-murphey/

https://khn.org/news/article/radonda-vaught-fatal-drug-error-vanderbilt-hospital-responsibility/

https://starkmanapproved.com/when-hospitals-get-away-with-homicide/

My bad. The hospital got away with not being tainted and holding on to their reputation, unlike RaDonda Vaught.

Edited by Freckledkorican