During your stay at a Massachusetts hospital, you probably encountered numerous medical professionals and staff members who came in and out of your room for one reason or another. However, those with whom you had the most contact, day and night, were nurses.
You recognized that there were some nurses who loved their jobs and others who were tired, some who seemed to have a handle on the situation and others who were less confident. Unfortunately, one or several of your nurses did not chart well, and this placed your health and recovery at serious risk.
Common charting errors
Keeping accurate patient records is one of the most crucial responsibilities of a nurse, but many nurses find the job tedious and time-consuming. Nevertheless, accurate and complete charting is often the main line of communication among the members of your medical team. If one omits vital information, you may suffer the consequences. Failure to accurately document your care and progress is an act of negligence, and some of the common charting errors can lead to adverse events, including:
- Neglecting to note your history of food allergies, health conditions and current medications
- Not taking the time to enter all actions a nurse takes concerning your treatment
- Failing to chart when you receive a dose of medication
- Forgetting to indicate when a doctor has discontinued or switched your medication
- Neglecting to record symptoms that you are having a negative reaction to a medication or treatment
- Neglecting to confirm your identity before entering information on a medical chart
A nurse who is rushing or careless with charting may accidentally transcribe the wrong medication or dose. On the other hand, a nurse who notices the incorrect entry in your chart and fails to question a dosage that seems wrong may be just as culpable for any injuries you may suffer as a result. While many charts are electronic these days, medical teams may still share handwritten information. A nurse’s sloppy handwriting may create confusion concerning your care.
Your rights after an injury
For the most part, nurses are caring and competent. However, it only takes one negligent nurse or one careless act to place your health and life in danger. Failing to chart your care properly is one way in which this may happen.
If you suffered complications or injury because a nurse failed to accurately chart your care, you have the right to answers. Seeking advice from a skilled attorney is a wise step to take on your way to potentially obtaining compensation for your suffering.