It is the duty of any home health care nurse to provide health care services such as occupational, physical, medical and social services to patients. These nurses generally provide personal and medical care to the disabled, chronically ill or people suffering from cognitive impairments. Some of the assistance include: bathing, dressing and house work in general. According to Hughes (2008), the main goal of home health care services is to promote a patient’s well being through assistance and improvement of independency.
In this case study, Mary is provided with medication but neglected in terms of maintaining her home’s cleanliness. To begin with, it is ethical for any nurse to treat home care patients such as Mary with respect, beneficence, justice and veracity. It is evident that Regina ethically treats Mary with respect and beneficence because she discusses with her the benefits of applying home health aid. She also informs Patty the nurse in duty of the safety risks associated with Mary’s residence. Patty can be said to have performed her duty well because she properly administered medication to the patient. On the other hand, she risks losing her license as asserted by Regina. She also puts the home health care department at risk mainly because of negligence.
According to the National Commission on Correctional Health Care, legal implications in the nursing practice are associated with state laws, licensure, public expectation and scope of practice. This means that nurses are supposed to be very professional in their line of duty. When nurses fall below the acceptable standards, they are liable for litigation. For example, physically assaulting a patient could lead to revocation of a nurse’s license. In this case, Patty may loose her license if the patient suffers serious health problems eventually putting the home health care department at risk because of negligence. Therefore, health care nurses should provide high quality and safe care for patients in order to promote their well being and reputation of the care departments.
Hughes, R.G. (2008). Patient Safety and Quality: An Evidence-Based Handbook for Nurses. Rockville: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.
National Commission on Correctional Health Care. Ethical and Legal Issues.