Sending a patient home w/o a physician's d/c order

Nurses General Nursing


  • by kate24
    Specializes in L&D, Postpartum, Nursery, Med/Surg/Tele.

I was terminated after 12 years (9 spent on our OB unit) in a small community hospital for sending a baby home w/o a physician's order. I know that I have done this before and other nurses have too (never intentionally). Usually the physician will cover us. Unfortunately, there a lot of other political and process issues going on right now at this facility. For one, the physician in question is angry because another group has a NNP who "stole" two of his patients at the same time. We have two different operating systems that are not compatible, plus the paper chart so we have to go looking in three different places for information, which everyone agrees sets us up for things to be missed. Because we are a small unit, we are expected to do L&D and postpartum. On the day in question, I was trying to be a "team player" and admitted another nurse's second labor patient and started her IV and drew her blood work. I suppose if I would have just stuck to my side of the hallway (postpartum) I wouldn't be in this nightmare. My question is: Can the facility report me to the Board of Nursing in my state for what they termed "practicing outside of my scope of practice" to where it would effect my license and ability to work?

Specializes in Ortho, Neuro, Detox, Tele.

sorry, I believe this is deemed to be legal in nature, and we can't give legal advice. I hope everything works out, good luck..and stay positive!


6 Posts

Specializes in L&D, Postpartum, Nursery, Med/Surg/Tele.

Perhaps I did not phrase my question correctly. Has anyone else had a similar experience?

Specializes in Critical Care.

While we can't give legal advice here, as someone of course has already pointed out, do you want to risk having to go before your board of nursing without being prepared? If you have , you need to notify your carrier and seek assistance. If you don't, you should find someone who specializes in representing nurses before the board and get a file started, just in case. Don't risk your livelihood without being prepared. Good luck to you

Specializes in Med/Surg.

I understand missing something that was ordered (since you mention the different systems), but how do you carry out an order that ISN'T there? I don't get it.


296 Posts

Specializes in Cardiac Care, Palliative Care.

How did you decide to send a baby home without a doctor's d/c orders? I don't think it's anything political about your termination, you sent a baby home without the order of the doctor.

notice things always set u up when your being a team player. Yet if you don't then you all kinds of crap....cant' win


985 Posts

Specializes in Med/Surg, ICU, educator.

Regardless of the unit, I've never heard of d/c'ing a patient without an order. I mean, you really would have to look at d/c orders to be able to do the patient d/c teaching, and follow-up info, in this case. I think you may have legal issues with this, and with that being said, I'd contact an expert to help you muddle through it, as well as your malpractice provider. Good luck, regardless of how it rolls.....

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