January 10, 2012
Shawishi T. Haynes
Negligence, gross negligence, and malpractice are terms that healthcare professionals fear being involved in. We have healthcare laws and policies that guide each healthcare practice. In today’s litigious society, we see healthcare lawsuits that are wrongfully filled, some that are not valid, and some unjustly settled cases. Yet there are some situations where a lawsuit should have definitely taken place and no one filed. There are people that live of monies collected from lawsuits, while there are people that are uneducated, and unaware of these options. This paper will discuss the differences between malpractice, gross negligence, and negligence, and then use this information to comment on how a reasonable nurse would have possibly prevented that mishap that took place in the story of the patient in the Neighborhood, Episode 7, Season 3 newspaper article. “Negligence is a general term that denotes conduct lacking in due care” (Guido, 2010). In the healthcare world this means not providing proper care, or providing care that is inappropriate. This also meaning that the reasonable healthcare worker would have acted differently in the same situation. According to an article by Cornock, four elements must be proven to establish negligence, which are duty of care, breach of duty, harm, and causation (2011). Duty of care meaning that the healthcare professional owed the person a certain standard of care that he or she did not meet. Breach of duty is when the healthcare professional failed to act in a way that was expected from his or her professional area of expertise. Harm refers to the need to prove that harm has been sustained as a result of the breach of duty. Causation is speaking of needing to show a causal link between n the breach of duty and the harm suffered by the patient (Cornock, 2011).
Malpractice is sometimes referred to a...