The video is chilling to anyone, but especially to nurses who can imagine being in exactly the same vulnerable position. A man’s brutal attack on unit nurses at St. John’s Hospital in Maplewood, MN, is putting the spotlight on violence in healthcare facilities and the potential harm facing the victims and the hospital.
The risk of an Emergency Medical Treatment & Labor Act (EMTALA) lawsuit involving a patient with psychiatric illness is low, according to a recent study.1 If emergency physicians (EPs) perform appropriate medical screening examinations, the lawsuit is rarely successful.
Certain diagnoses have recurrently and consistently been the bane of emergency department (ED) physicians, with regard to malpractice payouts year after year. They continue to be missed, and lead to some of the larger awards. Below we present several recent typical cases to raise awareness and avoid liability.
In 2013, an emergency department (ED) director was terminated after commenting on a patients photo, which had been posted on Facebook by an ED nurse.1 In a similar case the same year, an emergency physician (EP) was sued after posting a photo of an intoxicated patient that included comments.
The violent attack on nurses at St. John’s Hospital in Maplewood, MN, was caught on surveillance video that soon was released to the public. The images are disturbing, particularly because the staff members are so defenseless against their attacker.
The healthcare system involved in a false claims investigation prompted by a former employee blowing the whistle has settled the case. Dignity Health hospital system, based in San Francisco, has agreed to pay $37 million to settle the charges.