Clinical Nursing License Defense Attorney in Kansas and Missouri

Health care clinics have taken an increased role in delivering services to patients. Many individuals seek care in clinics as an alternative to seeing a primary care doctor or going to the emergency room at their local hospital for health problems. Nurses in the clinical setting face challenges that nurses in providing care in a hospital or office setting are not confronted. Nevertheless, clinical nurses must maintain the utmost degree of ethical practice and adherence to the Codes of Conduct governing nursing practice in their state. Nurses practicing in a clinical setting must be vigilant about ethical practice because many of their patients come from underserved or vulnerable populations who perhaps need more care and guidance than others in the community. Kansas and Missouri professional licensing attorney Danielle Sanger has vast experience representing clinical nurses, as well as nurses in other disciplines, who face professional discipline.

What Are Some of the Ethical Pitfalls Of Clinical Nursing?

Many of the ethical problems nurses experience in clinical nursing confront nurses working in other healthcare settings. However, clinical nursing faces challenges unique to its profession. Those are:

  • Insufficient patient education;
  • Failing to competently follow-up with patients for referrals and immunizations;
  • Unsafe working conditions;
  • Increased levels of stress and being overworked;
  • Maintaining patient confidentiality; and
  • Violating patients’ privacy rights.

This list is by no means exhaustive or mutually exclusive. However, these issues present themselves more frequently in the clinical setting because of the type of patient who utilizes the clinic for healthcare.

What Can A Nurse Do To Guard Against Ethical Dilemmas In The Clinical Setting?

A clinical patient is one that is “in and out.” They come in to address one issue or another confronting them and then leave until the next issue arises. There are huge gaps in the care of this type of patient. Nurses can help fill that gap by working with the patient and treating physician to ensure that the patient is up to date on immunizations or schedules appointments for referral services if necessary.  This is where patient education is imperative. To guard against ethical and conduct violations a nurse can:

  • Report unsafe working conditions and other perceived ethical violations to the lead physician, nurse manager, or appropriate licensing authority;
  • Seek counsel from your nurse manager, physicians, other nurses, or nurse licensing authority when confronted with ethical issues. Do not assume that things will work out simply because you are a good Protect yourself;
  • Document patient files appropriately, including questions regarding ethical conduct when appropriate;
  • Manage stress in a healthy manner and not resort to destructive alternatives such as alcohol and substance abuse. Make sure you take care of yourself. You cannot deliver the care your patients require if you are unhealthy yourself;
  • Be vigilant about maintaining patient confidentiality and not violating patients’ rights to privacy and dignity. Report violations and work to institute corrective measures including continuing education and instilling best practice methods;
  • Continue with your education and personal advancement.

What Should You Do If You Receive A Complaint From The Board Of Nursing?

Receiving a complaint about your professional practice threatens your ability to earn a living. The natural response would be to panic, followed by an urge to pick up the phone to call someone and scream at them in defense of yourself. Here are some suggestions as to what to do:

  • Take a breath. Most problems can be fixed without losing your license to practice nursing;
  • Do not call anyone, write an email, or talk about the allegations with anyone until you have contacted a professional licensing attorney;
  • Do not speak to anyone investigating the complaint against you without your attorney present; and
  • Gather documents you think may help you in your defense and give them to your lawyer.

Rely On Experience If You Face Allegations of Unprofessional Conduct In Kansas Or Missouri

Kansas and Missouri clinical nursing license defense attorney Danielle Sanger possesses vast experience in representing healthcare professionals. Call Attorney Sanger today at 785-979-4353 (Kansas) or 816-520-8040 (Missouri) to schedule a consultation to learn your rights and responsibilities if you are a nurse facing professional discipline.