Premium Essay

An Ethical Analysis of Negligence

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By titobocajrs
Words 1635
Pages 7
An Ethical Analysis of Negligence
In this paper, the author will describe the main differences among negligence, gross negligence, and malpractice in the medical field. In addition, the author will explain his opinion about this article and the facts described in it as well as the rationale used to form this opinion. Furthermore, the author will describe the importance of documentation in the medical field as well as how nurses should document when providing care while complying with legal and ethical requirements.
Unintentional torts are the most common torts in the medical field. Torts are acts occurred without the tortfeasor intention to cause harm; however, some type of harm results from it. Torts are also actions committed unreasonably or disregarding the consequences, in legal terms this represents negligence (Judson & Harrison, 2010). According to Judson and Harrison (2010), negligence is an unintentional tort and a person is negligent when in similar circumstances he or she did not performed as expected from a reasonable person (Judson & Harrison, 2010).
Defining gross negligence is a more complicated issue. According to Thornton (2006) the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code defines gross negligence as an act of omission that when viewed from the position of the actor at the time the omission occurred it shows a significant degree of risk and possible harm to others (Thornton, 2006). In addition, the actor is aware of the risks but proceeds disregarding the rights, welfare, or safety of others (Thornton, 2006). Negligence must be proven prior to establishing gross negligence; however, circumstantial evidence can also establish gross negligence (Thornton, 2006).
According to Croke (2003) the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations defines malpractice as improper, unethical conduct, or unreasonable lack of skill by a holder of a...

Similar Documents

Free Essay

Negligence

...Negligence Latasha Adegboruwa University of Phoenix Health Law and ethics HCS/478 Lynda White April 18, 2011 Negligence “Registered nurses have more professional accountability than at any other time in the history of nursing. As a result, nurses must confront the fact that they now owe a higher duty of care to their patients, and by extension, are more exposed to civil claims for negligence than ever before”(Weld and Bibb, 2009, p 2). “Negligence is described as failure to use such care as a reasonable prudent and careful person would use under similar circumstances” (Weld and Bibb, 2009, p3). Common examples of negligence are malnutrition, inadequate hydration, physical injury was done, and it was the result of the nurse’s care or lack thereof. There are five main elements in a nursing negligence case and all five elements have to be proven for a case to be valid 1. The nurse had a duty to perform. 2. The appropriate care was not apparent in the situation. 3. There was a breach of violation of care 3. There was injury proven to result from the nurse’s negligence and 5. There is proof that damages occurred as a direct result of the situation. (Avery, 2009). Gross negligence is a more serious form of negligence and goes further than carelessness. While regular negligence is seen as a person falling below the standard of care, gross negligence is seen as complete failure to show care and in fact implies recklessness or a willful disregard for the......

Words: 1167 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Nurse

...Negligence Paper HCS/478 2/23/15 Mary Burke PhD, RN, CNE Negligence Paper Envision that you woke up in the recovery room after being sedated for a medical procedure; you found out that you lost one of your limbs due to amputation. You are in and out of consciousness. They took you to a step-down unit eventually after you were in recovery for two hours, so that you will recover, receive therapy and teaching. Finally the staff settles you into your bed. You throw back your bed sheets, and you saw that they had amputated the sound limb and left you with the unfortunate leg that was supposed to be cut off by the hospital physician. “The joint commission considers wrong site surgery to be sentinel events that are an unexpected occurrence involving death or serious physical or physiological injury, or the risk from that point forward. Serious injury specifically includes loss of limb or function” (Dillon, 2008) Mr. Joseph Benson is a sixty-two-year-old who has circulation problems and is diabetic; one of his limbs requires amputation. I will explain in this negligence paper the differences that separate negligence, gross negligence, and malpractice. I will look into the reasoning why nursing shortages and union problems may have caused the disaster. Finally, I will state why it is important to document because of the chances of negligence should I be Mr. Benson’s nurse. Briefly I will describe my ethical principles concept, this will guide my hospital practice and......

Words: 1197 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Ford Pinto

...THE FORD PINTO CASE: THE VALUATION OF LIFE AS IT APPLIES TO THE NEGLIGENCE-EFFICIENCY ARGUMENT Christopher Leggett Law & Valuation Professor Palmiter Spring, 1999 Abstract Text of Paper Abstract The cases involving the explosion of Ford Pinto's due to a defective fuel system design led to the debate of many issues, most centering around the use by Ford of a cost-benefit analysis and the ethics surrounding its decision not to upgrade the fuel system based on this analysis. ISSUE Should a risk/benefit analysis be used in situations where a defect in design or manufacturing could lead to death or seriously bodily harm, such as in the Ford Pinto situation? RULE There are arguments both for and against such an analysis. It is an economically efficient method which has been accepted by courts for numerous years, however, juries may not always agree, so companies should take this into account. ANALYSIS Although Ford had access to a new design which would decrease the possibility of the Ford Pinto from exploding, the company chose not to implement the design, which would have cost $11 per car, even though it had done an analysis showing that the new design would result in 180 less deaths. The company defended itself on the grounds that it used the accepted risk/benefit analysis to determine if the monetary costs of making the change were greater than the societal benefit. Based on the numbers Ford used, the cost would have been $137 million versus the $49.5......

Words: 9256 - Pages: 38

Free Essay

Negligence Paper

...Negligence Paper Jennifer Zuber HCS/478 April 11, 2016 Susan Lawson Negligence Paper In 1711, Alexander Pope wrote in a poem, "To err is human." Errors happen in every walk of life and every career path, but there are some areas where and error could be the difference between life and death or profound injury. The healthcare field is one of those areas. Over time, health care has evolved. There are now so many practices and protocols in place so that errors may be avoided. It is understood that there are some errors that may occur due to being human, and then there are other mistakes that should never happen, such as surgically amputating the wrong limb. There are so many safeguards in place to prevent such errors from happening. Negligence is a general term that denotes conduct lacking in due care (Guido, 2014). Malpractice sometimes referred to as professional negligence, is a more specific term that addresses a professional standard of care as well as the professional status of the caregiver. To be liable for malpractice, the person committing the civil wrong must be a professional, such as a physician, nurse, accountant, or lawyer (Guido, 2014). Gross negligence is an act or omission “which when viewed objectively from the standpoint of the actor at the time of its occurrence involves an extreme degree of risk, considering the probability and magnitude of the potential harm to others; and of which the actor has actual, subjective awareness of the......

Words: 1256 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Ford Pinto and Utilitarianism

...The ethical justification of a decision using utilitarian analysis allows the person making the decision a resolution to the question of what action taken is best for the most people involved in the decision. Utilitarianism holds that, in the final analysis, only one action is right and that action is such that it’s benefits outweigh all other alternatives for people affected by the action. James Rachel states “This principle requires that whenever we have a choice between alternative actions or social policies, we must choose the one that has the best overall consequences for everyone concerned.” It is easy to call an act unethical based on first sight, but utilitarianism forces a calculation to look deeper and to identify the best consequences of the act. This is uncomfortable in society due to the selfishness of the individual citizen. One may not be happy if they are of the few who are receiving the negative side of a decision which impacts everyone else for the greatest good and for the most people possible. From this philosophical standpoint, cost benefit analysis would be a natural outcome. The Ford Pinto case is based upon act utilitarianism’s approach to making a decision using a cost benefit analysis and whether that action makes the best ethical outcome for all involved. In 1968, Ford Motor Company had a decision to make as to whether it would compete in the subcompact automotive market. Ford needed to quickly introduce a small, fuel efficient, and cheap car on......

Words: 1680 - Pages: 7

Free Essay

Marketing

...Assignment 3: Corporate Governance and Ethical Responsibility Research Paper By: To Professor: Stacie Pittell COURSE NAME: LEG 500 – Law, Ethics, and Corporate Governance Strayer University Washington DC August 2012 Corporate Governance and Ethical Responsibility Research Paper This analysis paper will explain if Dr. DoRight of Universal Human Care Hospital can manage when he discovers that patients inside the hospital are dying as a results of a extent of illegal practices by doctors, nurses and careless supervision of oversight on their be half. Also question the rights of staff to health and safety within the work place and address the duty of loyalty, and conflicts of interest between internal and external stakeholders. Additionally discuss the moral duties to report illegal actions, along side the deontology and utilitarianism principles. The Universal Human Care Hospital has to decide a way to handle things at the hospital. 1. Determine at least three (3) different internal and external stakeholders that Dr. DoRight might have to deal with on a daily basis at the hospital. The Universal Human Care Hospital has different internal and external stakeholders. Selected of these insider stakeholders are the nurse group committee, department managers, and Regional Director Compliance Manager. The nurse group committee is common nurses in command of promoting the health and safety of patients in their care. Department managers are......

Words: 1774 - Pages: 8

Free Essay

Business Regulation Simulation

...contaminating the waters of Lake Dira with PAHs thus causing her 10 year old daughter’s leukemia. “Bates also alleges that her daughter’s disease may be as old as Alumina’s first instance of environmental law violation” (University of Phoenix, 2002). These allegations were reviewed by Alumina’s legal counsel and handled to keep the company from further litigation that would only serve to tarnish the company’s reputation. This paper will illustrate key facts, regulations and legal issues in the Business Regulation Simulation. It will address the values, conflicts among the stakeholders and ethical dilemmas with the multibillion dollar company. A legal counsel’s summary of basic issues and the action handling the environmental regulatory topic will be explored. Based on table 1, a risk analysis and alternative solutions will be examined. Lastly, this paper will be addressing ethical dilemmas identified and the alignment to Alumina’s values. Key facts, Regulations and Legal Issues Five years ago, Alumina was in violation of the Clean Water Act, 1972, by unlawfully discharging PAHs into Lake Dira in the state of Erehwon. “The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has determined that...

Words: 2387 - Pages: 10

Free Essay

Ethics Analysis Paper

...Adam Fye Dr. Melo MGT 313-07 23 October 2015 Ethics Analysis Paper April 5, 2010 was a day that forever changed the lives of 29 coal miners from southern West Virginia, and their families. These twenty-nine men who worked at the Upper Big Branch (UBB) coal mine owned by the Massey Energy Corporation all perished in the largest mining disaster in over four decades. The dilemma that I will analyze in my paper is whether Massey Energy acted in an ethical manner with regards to the events at the UBB mine. The dilemma will be analyzed using two different ethical principles, the principle of lawfulness and the principle of harm. Along with the ethical principles, Massey will be subject to two different methods of ethical reasoning. These two methods are the human rights and utilitarian methods. After analyzing their actions in accordance to these principles and methods, I concluded by all accounts that Massey did not act in an ethical way. Ethical principles are society’s guide to moral behavior. They are basic behavioral rules that are considered essential for the preservation and continuation of organized life. One principle for ethical and moral behavior is the principle of lawfulness. This principle states that individuals are to not violate the law in order to act in an ethical fashion. Massey Energy Corporation was known for not adhering to governmental mandates that ensured the safety of the environment. Two years prior to the disaster at UBB, Massey violated......

Words: 974 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Society, Culture and Health

...witnessed or has knowledge of. An ethical issue of human rights has to be keenly looked upon when addressing this; if one has to report such incidences yet the involved party is his or her colleague or friend. This situation could prove challenging but by adhering to and evaluating various bioethical principles in conjunction with one’s own beliefs, professionalism and the organization’s set standards, a solution to such scenarios can occur. This assay argument will base on ethical principles of primary loyalty to the patient. Often individual are identified as the source of the ethical failure. However, one the most important aspects of creating ethical behavior are the culture of environment of the organization in which individuals functions. Managerial ethics assume a position of profound consequences here in the form of organization policies and process, culture espoused vs. values, leadership behavior, rewards punishment, social networks and treatment of employees. As much as organizational policies and process and procedures dictate actions that may have ethical content. The responsibility cannot be “farmed out” to others in order to place the blame outside the organization when the failure occurs. The code of ethics incorporates standards of ethical behavior, particularly when that conduct directly relates to the role and identity of health care workers. Being a model means decisions and actions will reflect personal integrity and ethical leadership that others will......

Words: 1957 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

“a Satisfactory Justification for Strict Liability in Tort Law Has Yet to Be Found.”

...fault’. Courts have energetically defended the view that fault is crucial in establishing responsibility. On the other hand, the same jurisdictions have operated a shift since Rylands v Fletcher from this doctrinal claim to adopt a strict liability standard in particular circumstances. Despite its appearance in statutes, many claim that a satisfactory justification for strict liability in tort law has yet to be found. This essay will nevertheless argue that this stand is unsupported and untrue: it is nonsensical to call for one unique explanation for this area of the law. The law on strict liability responds to a social demand which should not be reduced to one ‘metatheory’. The first two parts of this essay will be dedicated to the analysis the ‘social and economic benefits’ of strict liability mentioned in Chavez v Southern Pacific Transportation Co. We shall then argue that these justifications are best understood when interrelated with a broader moral justification. I] Social justifications: distributive justice and social harmony The main aim of the law of torts is to compensate victims for the damage they suffer. Strict liability plays a very key role in respect of this. It is important to note that strict liability is generally imposed upon dangerous activities, such as nuclear power production, which society is reluctant to accept. According to the ‘deterrence...

Words: 3156 - Pages: 13

Free Essay

Case Analysis - Liebeck V. Mcdonald’s Restaurants Andpearson V. Chung

...Case Analysis Liebeck v. McDonald’s Restaurants Pearson v. Chung Introduction Liebeck v. McDonald’s Restaurant, also referred to as the “McDonald coffee case”, was a well known case in the United States of America in 1994 because it was considered frivolous. The case involved a woman Stella Lieback, who spilled the hot coffee she purchased from McDonald onto her lap and sustained a series of third degree burns, and was awarded millions of dollars from her lawsuit against McDonalds. The coffee was not only hot, but it was scalding, capable of immediate damage to the skin, flesh and muscle (Letric Law, 2011). In addition to the above case, the Pearson v. Chung case, also known as the “pants lawsuit”, was also a well known case in America in 2005 (Lexis-Nexis, 2008). This is a case where an administrative law judge in the District of Columbia had taken a pair of pants to the cleaners for alteration and dry cleaning; and sued the cleaners for $67 million dollars for the loss of his pants. The case was considered frivolous and became a flashpoint in the debate in the United States over tort reform (Lexis-Nexis, 2008). The major focus of this paper will be to critically analyze these two cases on the stated facts, the issues, the applicable laws, and the decision of the judge and the jury. What are the facts? There are some facts associated with Liebeck v. McDonald’s case. The woman involved in this case was 79-year old Stella Liebeck of Albuquerque, New Mexico,...

Words: 4178 - Pages: 17

Premium Essay

Law and Ethics

...Karris Moses Professor Armstrong Law, Ethics and Corporate Governance Assignment 3: Corporate Governance and Ethical Responsibility Research Paper February 17, 2013 Karris Moses Prof. Armstrong LEG 500 February 17, 2013 Dr. DoRight has recently been hired as the President of the “Universal Human Care Hospital”, where he oversees all departments with over 5,000 employees and over 20,000 patients at the medical facility. He has been provided with a broad set of duties and oversight of numerous departments, including business development, customer services, human resources, legal, patient advocacy, to name a few. He has managers in each department that he supervises and who work with him to address the needs of the various internal and external stakeholders of the hospital. Dr. DoRight discovers that some patients within the hospital have been dying as a result of a variety of illegal procedures by doctors and nurses, and negligent supervision and oversight on their part. This was brought to his attention in a few meetings and he told his Regional Director Compliance Manager and Executive Committee in January 2009. He was told by them that the matter would be investigated and they would report any findings to him as soon as possible. After two (2) years, there have been no results from the investigation and some patients are still passing away due to the negligent activities. He also answers to a board of trustees and interfaces with numerous community......

Words: 2595 - Pages: 11

Free Essay

Forensic Accounting Practice

...increasingly popular in the past few years as there have been a number of corporate scandals, stricter reporting, and internal control regulations involving public awareness and importance in the business world. With the state of the world’s economy forensic accountants are in high demand. Forensic accountants should at least possess a Bachelor degree in accounting. They should also be a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and may possess other certifications such as Certified Forensic Accountant (CrFA) and Certified Forensic Accounting Professional (CFAP). The skills needed to become a forensic accountant include strategic critical thinking, problem solving/decision making, leadership, interpersonal and communication skills, and professional and ethical behavior. Strategic critical thinking is the ability to link data, knowledge, and insight together from various disciplines to provide information for making a decision and communicate a vision, strategy, goals and culture of a company. The individual should be able to articulate principles strategically, identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats related to a particular activity. A Forensic Accountant should be able to identify and gather data...

Words: 1634 - Pages: 7

Free Essay

Liebeck V. Mcdonald’s and Pearson V. Custom Cleaners Legal Case Analysis

...Liebeck v. McDonald’s and Pearson v. Custom Cleaners Legal Case Analysis AMBA 610 9043 University of Maryland University College Introduction Frivolous lawsuits can be a determent to those who are really seeking justice through the court system. Lawsuits that are frivolous in nature are filed in the court systems that lack legal merit (Frivolous Lawsuit Law & Legal Definition, 2015). Plaintiffs and attorneys who decide to partake in meaningless claims against other parties can anger society by wasting tax payer’s money on cases that are filed and argued with loop holes in litigation (Frivolous Lawsuit Law & Legal Definition, 2015). Evaluating the product and service liability laws will give insight into the two cases that will be discussed in this paper. The two cases covers how product liability effects the consumer and company owners of each industry of businesses. Cases that are brought to courts for product liability is always initiated by the plaintiff who has to prove if the defendant is liable for alleged action claims (Jones, 2015). Two cases that have made an impact on the pursuit of filing frivolous lawsuits is the Liebeck v. McDonald’s and Pearson v. Custom Cleaners case, which will be discussed in further detail throughout this paper. If cases set precedence’s in the court systems, then these two cases show how people can obtain or attempt to collect monies from others that lacks in importance to bringing legal justice per society standards.......

Words: 3359 - Pages: 14

Premium Essay

Palsgraf V. Long Island Railroad

...Helen Palsgraf was standing on a Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) platform in New York City, waiting for a train to take her and her two daughters. While she was waiting for her train, another train pulled in, and two passengers came running across the platform to catch it. One of the passengers was carrying a package under his arm. The train began leaving the platform, and two LIRR employees (one on the train, one on the ground) attempted to help the passengers get on board while the train was moving. As they pulled the passengers onto the train, the package fell to the platform. Unbeknownst to the railroad workers, the package contained fireworks. The men were on their way to a celebration in Queens, and had brought several rockets with them to light up. As soon as the package hit the ground, it exploded. The explosion could be heard several blocks away; a stampede erupted on the crowded platform as people began running. Palsgraf, at the other end of the platform, was not hurt by the explosion itself. Rather, the explosion knocked over a large scale next to Palsgraf, which fell on her and struck her in the arm, hip, and thigh. She was able to walk with great difficulty, but was unable to continue her job as a housekeeper, and began suffering from shock-related symptoms a few days later, including stuttering. Palsgraf prepared the case against the Long Island Railroad. LIRR argued that its employees had not been negligent in the events that led up to Palsgraf's injury.......

Words: 1626 - Pages: 7