Legalities in All Wound Care Negligence of Care

Lydia A. Corum*

Legalities in All Wound Care Negligence of Care

Wound care costs in the United States exceeds 10 times more than that of other countries.
Legal suites are increasingly paid out by clinicians, not the hospitals or the healthcare system.

Many clinicians are facing lawsuits for malpractice or professional neglect.
When taken to court and found guilty, the judgment will result in a large settlement then
include the loss of the clinician’s license.

Since malpractice has a limited judgement, many lawyers are seeking damages as a result
of elder abuse. In using elder abuse, the judgements do not have a limitation and often result in very
large settlements.

Clinicians need to learn how to protect him/ herself from lawsuits and present the best defense.
Areas of negligence in care are: 1) Failure to follow the provider’s orders. 2) Failure to properly
monitor and observe the patient and the progress of the wound, 3) Failure to report changes
in the patient’s condition.

4) Failure to properly document wound assessment properly and with true description.
The following paragraphs will explain these failures in greater detail.

Failure to follow a doctor’s order can result in disciplinary action by the employer and board of nursing.
There are exceptions, when related to patient safety or against hospital policy.
The difference between medication orders and wound care, is the fact the patient is seldom
at a safety risk or not following hospital policy.

Once the discharging agency receives the order, a nurse is sent out to evaluate the wound
and do the dressing change. What is discovered, is the orders are very specific in the dressing types
and none are what the discharging agency has in stock.

Emerg Med Open J. 2021; 7(1): 7-8. doi: 10.17140/EMOJ-7-159