Nurses must take care of various healthcare tasks, such as monitoring patient health, administering medication, performing diagnostic tests, and educating patients. Many nurses also assist during surgeries and are in charge of recording medical histories.
Whether they fail in their duties or there has been a miscommunication, patients or their families may believe it’s necessary to sue for malpractice. If you’re a nurse in this exact position, consider taking the following steps.
Seek Legal Help
Seeking out attorneys for nurses without delay is one of the first and most crucial steps to take. If you’re unsure how the legal system works and what steps you’re supposed to take to reach a conclusion, talking to a defense attorney can be crucial.
A nurse license defense attorney can also be your first port of call if your hospital’s insurance company is taking care of them and you need someone to look after your interests.
Contact Your Insurance Company
Alongside seeking legal representation to help you navigate the law surrounding medical malpractice, it’s also paramount to contact your insurance company. You may have insurance through your hospital employer or personal professional liability insurance.
Your insurance company may appoint a defense attorney to represent you, or they may have a list of recommendations for you to choose from. If you’re uninsured, it’s up to you to find a suitable attorney to provide you with a quality defense.
While thousands of nurses are sued annually, that doesn’t mean all nurses know what to do when they find themselves in this situation. Don’t be afraid to ask as many questions as possible to ensure you make the right decisions going forward.
Some of these questions might relate to the allegations against you, such as negligent care of patients or about what you have to do to protect yourself as the case plays out. Nearly all experienced attorneys will be able to answer most questions you have.
Request Mental Health Support
While a malpractice case is playing out, you generally can’t talk to loved ones and colleagues about what’s happening. Much of the information is confidential, and you can feel isolated and alone.
As some medical malpractice cases can drag out for months, you may see the value in seeking mental health support from a trained therapist. They can ensure you have the tools you need to manage your stress levels and take care of your mental health.
Don’t Get Involved in the Investigation
As tempting as it can be to ask people questions, get information, view records, or look for errors, refrain from doing so. You may be viewed as trying to cover up an error or prevent an investigation from taking its course by getting involved in the investigation.
Instead, your attorney will likely advise you to take a back seat, give them as much information as you know, and allow them to talk to officials on your behalf. In the meantime, focus on getting enough rest and sleep, eating well, and preparing for settlement or a court case.
Getting sued as a nurse can be overwhelming, especially if you never thought it could happen to you. However, there are several things you can do to potentially improve your situation. Take note of this information above, and you may put yourself in the best position for a desirable outcome.