Clinical challenges for the NP

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  • The laws of each State differ about roles of Nurse Practitioner.
  • The differences have an impact on the nursing scope of practice.
  • It is essential to be updated with the laws of the state of practice to provide appropriate care to the patients.
  • The power Point presentation defines the legal implications for the standard of care and components of malpractice policy based on a case study.

Case Study Summary

  • The case study regards patient and professional relationships.
  • Jenifer is a 45-year-old Caucasian, who returned to the clinic for a refill of her hydrocodone.
  • She had a diagnosis of Ovarian Cancer that was successfully removed and treated.
  • She wanted to discuss how to file a lawsuit against a surgeon who initially turned her away during her previous visit to the facility.

Legal implications for standard of care about the case study 

  • Care providers are obliged to treat their patients and not turn them away.
  • Physicians have a legal duty to provide a particular standard of care to the patients in attending, diagnosing, referring, and instructing.
  • A breach of the duty of care that may result in an injury to the patient subjects the physician to be found guilty of negligence.
  • From the case selected, the surgeon refused to treat the patient citing poor diet which is a form of medical treatment denial.


  • The law prohibits the public and private hospitals from denying a patient care, especially for emergency cases.
  • A patient can file a lawsuit against a practitioner for negligence and failure to adhere to a standard of clinical practice.
  • The care provider may be found guilty of professional misconduct or a medical license revoked for denial of service.

Key components of malpractice policy related to the case study

  • From the case study, the surgeon is liable for malpractice due to the denial of care to the patient.
  • The components applicable to the case are a duty, and breach of duty.
  • For the duty, the surgeon owed to provide care to the patient.
  • He ought to provide a safe environment and initiate treatment to the patient as desired.


  • The surgeon declined to assess the condition of the patient despite having a duty to perform.
  • For the breach of duty, the surgeon owed a duty to the patient of providing the appropriate care.
  • However, the surgeon did not treat the patient as desired and instead turned her away on unjustified claims.
  • It would be appropriate to assess the patient according to the signs and symptoms presented other than turning her away.
  • Medical malpractice is a professional negligence that is likely to cause damage to a patient under care.
  • Medical malpractice can be filed as a lawsuit by the affected patient.

Maryland State Rules for NP practice regarding the case study

  • Maryland State identifies the patient rights and the rules of conduct for the nurse practitioners.
  • The patients that seek care have a right to a screening exam regardless of their ability to pay and should not be turned away.
  • The State exercises the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA) laws in the U.S
  • According to the laws, a violation by the Nurse practitioner may result in fines or jail terms.


  • The American Medical Association defines the doctor-patient relationship, and its fundamental elements are outlined in the code of medical ethics.
  • The nurse practitioner ought to adhere to the collaborative agreements with the patient at the point of care.
  • Patients have a legal obligation to receive care as desired and in appropriate environmental settings.


  • The role of a nurse practitioner is to offer the required care to the patient and enhance the quality of life.
  • However, they ought to practice within the set guidelines of their State jurisdictions.
  • A violation of the practices subjects them to legal implications.
  • It is essential for NP to remain updated of their expected conduct in clinical practice.


  • Buppert, C. (2015).Negligence and malpractice. In Nurse practitioner’s business practice and legal guide (5th ed.) (271-284). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett.
  • Miller, K. P. (2013). The national practitioner data bank: An annual update. The Journal for Nurse Practitioners, (9)9, 576-580. doi:10.1016/j.nurpra.2013.06.013.
  • Stelmach, E. I. (2015). Dismissal of the non compliant patient: Is this what we have come to? The Journal for Nurse Practitioners, 11(7), 723-725.
  • Watson, E. (2014). Nursing malpractice: Costs, trends, and issues. Journal of Legal Nurse Consulting, 25(1), 26-31

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