Professional Liability Risks for Nursing Home Staff
Nurses are obliged by the law to take good care of their patients and ensure every aspect of patient care and medication is handled correctly. If they fail to do so, it will be considered nursing negligence, resulting in severe consequences for the nurses.
If someone among your nursing staff is sued, the financial stakes are high. The defense costs alone can be up to $25,000 to handle your case in court, whether you win or lose. For this reason, it is extremely important for every nurse and nursing business to be protected from malpractice claims.
Here we will discuss some of the common malpractices that can result in liability risks that your nursing staff should know and avoid.
Fall and Fracture Injuries
There are numerous causes behind falls or slip injuries in long-term care facilities. Furniture or tools in hallways or gardens are responsible for 16-27% of falls. Since the patients of care homes are above the age of 70, anti-anxiety or panic medications assault the central nervous system, resulting in a fall or fracture injury.
These falls can lead to legal allegations against the nurse if the person gets a severe injury. Therefore, always be extra cautious with your old patients.
Medication errors can cause severe problems among the old residents. If a nurse mistakes a drug for another or overdoses while giving it to the patients, this will cause severe side effects such as diarrhea, nausea, or heart issues in the occupants. The nurse who makes the medication errors will face disciplinary actions by the state board of nursing, job dismissal, or a lawsuit.
Bedsores in casualties
The fact behind the bedsores complications is due to the negligence of nurses. Many nurses in long-term care facilities behave immaturely and won’t take patients’ health seriously. Bedsores occur in patients as they don’t change their position continuously, resulting in the loss of blood flow and severe injury to spinal cords. Nurses’ jobs are to take care of patients promptly, especially at night, but they often fail to do so.
Lack of proper food for patients
Most of the patients can’t digest hard foods due to dental problems. They couldn’t chew or eat the food without grinding, but the nurses on duty forget to mash or grate the food, which affects the patients’ gums and swells them or develops chronic health conditions. This error is the same as medication conceptions because WHO wouldn’t allow anybody to play with the sufferer health system.
Dehydration is more common in older people than in young ones. Natural causes include a sudden change in water and sodium balance and a lack of thirst sensation. In the hospital, nurses are responsible for giving the patients water, but they often forget to do this due to heavy workloads, causing patients to become dehydrated.
What Professional Liability Risks?
If the nursing staff doesn’t have professional liability insurance, a single lawsuit can effectively end their careers because the professional healthcare provider license is immediately revoked.
Here are a few reasons behind getting professional liability insurance:
Protection from lawsuits and nursing boards. The nursing board is independent of hospitals or employers’ plans so that the lawsuit can be charged for, and the chances of license cancellation are fairly high if your license is revoked. By purchasing your insurance policy, you’re protected against lawsuits as well as complaints to nursing boards.
Defend while volunteering or serving outside. Being a certified nurse, you can confidently serve the patients and volunteer outside your job. Independent contractors, however, are automatically excluded from their employer’s insurance coverage. You can take on independent medical work with much greater confidence if you have medical professional liability insurance as a medical professional.
Professional liability insurance is not expensive. The past nurses did not have stable financial conditions, and malpractice insurance was out of their budgets, and they, therefore, faced legal issues after every shift.
But now, nurses have stable monthly or annual wages. They live with fixed economic resources. It’s now possible to own professional liability insurance to secure the way from allegations. They are not very expensive and offer multiple lifetime benefits.
Employer’s insurance policies are inadequate. Many nurses, while having employer’s insurance, think that is sufficient. But, unfortunately, it’s not enough for coverage. However, an employee can have an adequate amount of insurance, but in the case of nurses, they should ask how much the company insurance is willing to provide.
The best way to protect yourself from nurse negligence allegations is to have professional liability insurance. It’s an employee’s right to file a lawsuit against you for lost money, and the nurses would have independently brought the principal amount.
About Midwest Insurance Group
Midwest Insurance Group is a risk retention group developed by Caitlin Morgan Insurance Services in response to the unique needs of the healthcare industry, particularly that of senior living facilities. With rising premium costs and difficulties in obtaining coverage from the traditional professional and general liability insurance market, Midwest Insurance Group represents a viable, long-term insurance alternative for the senior living sector, giving members complete control over costs and claims management. Midwest Insurance Group is reinsured with Lloyd’s of London, and A rated by Demotech.