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Nurse Interruptions, Phone Calls, and Malpractice: The Connection

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Pediatric Nurses Interrupted by Phone Calls have been Associated with a Rise in Medication Errors

The PICU is a harried place, filled with stress and quick-changing providers intervening in patient management strategies. They serve the sickest pediatric patients. Since nurses spend the most time with their patients, they are critical to patient safety. As such, hospital hiring and staffing policies must help avoid medication error outcomes, given that nurses get distracted. Staffing enough nurses to reduce nurse-to-patient ratios is likely to reduce medication errors, especially among high-risk patients, like those in the PICU. Additionally, more oversight of less experienced nurses may reduce medication errors. No doubt, the PICU houses the most critically ill children with higher likelihood of long lists of medication prescriptions. This is all the more reason for a nurse’s undivided attention to tasks, such as administering weight-based medications that may include pain, respiratory, and heart medications.  Since nurses can turn off their phones during medication administration hours, medication errors that occur shortly after an incoming telephone call are more likely preventable errors.

Holding Negligent Nurses and Hospitals Accountable

When a sick child suffers a preventable injury, the party responsible for avoiding such injury may be held liable for medical malpractice. One such party may be the hospital, which should have a cell phone policy for nurses administering medication. PICU patients who suffer injury from avoidable medication errors may claim damages against the nurses, hospitals, and others responsible for the errors that cause injuries. A pediatric malpractice claim seeks compensation for the medical, emotional, and financial losses a child and their parents experience due to injuries caused by another’s negligence. In essence, a lawsuit aims to cover a child’s past, present, and future losses and needs. As some children may have life-long requirements for medications, medical devices, and therapies due to the harm they suffered from a negligent healthcare provider, the costs to cover those needs may total millions of dollars.

Child Injured by a Distracted Nurse in NJ? We can Help

An inattentive nurse who caused a child injury, and the hospital that employs them, may be held accountable for contributing to patient injuries, among other parties involved in the child’s care during their stay. If your child suffered from any form of medical malpractice, you will need an experienced pediatric malpractice attorney to help you through the process of filing, preparing, negotiating, settling, or litigating the claim to recover the compensation your child deserves. You will need to know who, how, and when to sue to recover your child’s emergent needs and yours, as well as the long-term costs of their care. With this study confirming nurses’ distractions and conditions that lead to medication errors for pediatric patients, it is important to be aware that when these injuries impact your child due to nurse interruptions and other negligence, you have the opportunity to be heard and have justice served. Contact a well-versed pediatric malpractice attorney on our legal team in New Jersey at (866)-708-8617 to discuss your child’s case free of charge.

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