There are cases, as a nurse, where you may disagree with a patient. For instance, you may suggest a certain type of care that you know that they need. You know it’s going to help them. Maybe it can help them recover, or perhaps they even need it so that their condition won’t turn terminal.
But, for one reason or another, the patient rejects that type of treatment. You know that it’s going to be detrimental to their health. Maybe they just don’t have the same grasp of the medical condition that you do. After all, this is your profession, and most people know very little about it. But can you give them that treatment without their consent to receive it, knowing that you’re helping them?
Patient consent must be provided
As difficult as it can sometimes be, it’s important for nurses to remember that they have to get consent. Patients have autonomy. They are allowed to make their own decisions. They can choose the type of care that they get and the type of care that they reject. Nurses have to respect this, even when they know that the patient is making the wrong decision.
If the nurse does give out treatment without consent, then this could certainly be constituted as medical malpractice. The nurse could be in danger of losing his or her license. Now, the nurse may point out that they were honestly just trying to help the patient and they knew how to do it, but they still have an ethical obligation to refrain from giving a patient any treatment that they don’t want.
Resolving licensing disputes
If you’re worried that you’re going to lose your nursing license for any reason, and your career along with it, take the time to look into the legal defense options you have.