Kansas and Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Danielle Sanger Describes How Nurses Can Enhance their Practice and Avoid Discipline

The news is full of reports of hair-raising medical malpractice cases. But any nurse can tell you that these incidents are really quite rare. That is not to say that patients are not injured due to mistakes; on the contrary, patients are injured, but these injuries more commonly arise from minor mistakes that compound over time, not from massive, single incidents. For nurses, these mistakes commonly arise during observations, when the nurse is checking in on the patient’s health, condition, and progress.  Because documentation is so necessary in nursing, these lapses and mistakes are often easy to catch and result in discipline.

I wrote the following blog post to explain how better observations can improve your chances of avoiding discipline. If you are a nurse in Kansas or Missouri facing an allegation of misconduct or an investigation, call attorney Sanger today at 785-979-4353 to schedule a free consultation. Your career, reputation, and livelihood are at risk, and the challenge facing you is one you cannot work your way through alone.

How Careful Patient Observations Help You Avoid Discipline

As a nurse, you must properly observe, assess and monitor your patients’ care. Injury and death may result from a lapse in this duty, resulting in discipline against you and even legal claims.  As I said above, it is fairly rare that a single, dramatic lapse causes this sort of unfortunate result; usually, it is caused by the slow accumulation of sloppy practices and shortcuts.

It may sound strange, but you have an opportunity to create the evidence that will be used against you in a licensing case.  What I mean is that your written patient observation notes are the best evidence of your innocence or your guilt. Your failure to keep records of your observations and actions is the best possible evidence against you—don’t give the licensing board an easy case! Instead, always be diligent about documenting that you monitored vitals, provided medications, noted changes in the patient’s condition, and any other care you provide. While time-consuming, making these behaviors a habitual practice will pay dividends in the long-run.

Stay Current on Your Required Professional Education

As a professional, you should want to be up to date regarding changes in your field. As you are well aware, technology and treatment protocols change rapidly. Stay up to date with these changes by maintaining your professional education requirements; failure to do so is often used as evidence when an error occurs. Importantly, if you fail to integrate these new practices into your patient care, this glaring omission will stand out to a board imposing discipline. Do not give the state licensing board their case against you—stay up to date on your training.

Hire an Experienced Licensing Attorney if Allegations Arise

While taking the above steps will help you avoid allegations, hospital politics, disappointed patients, and other factors outside your control can still lead to accusations. Too many nurses believe that they can talk their way through the discipline process. You can’t. If any allegation arises against you, contact an experienced licensing attorney immediately.

Contact an Experienced Kansas and Missouri Licensing Attorney Now for the Advice You Need

You have worked too hard to attain your nursing license to lose it because you failed to attain the sort of professional legal advice you needed when an allegation was made against you. Taking the above steps to improve your observations is just one piece of helpful information; speak with an experienced licensing defense attorney to arm yourself with the other essential parts of advice you need—it can mean the difference between getting back to helping your patients and losing your career forever.

Kansas and Missouri professional licensing attorney Danielle Sanger is prepared to advocate for your best interests and defend your nursing license. Call Attorney Sanger at 785-979-4353 to schedule a free consultation with an attorney experienced dealing with professional licensing issues.