Whistleblowing in Nursing – Health Care Law (Nursing)

by Christy Davidson

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    00:01 Welcome back everyone.

    00:03 As advocates for our patients and ourselves, it's important to remain vigilant in regards to illegal or unethical practices we discover in our workplace.

    00:12 If or when we discover this has occurred, it's also important that we understand whistleblowing.

    00:19 A whistleblower is a person who exposes any kind of information or actvity that is deemed illegal, unethical or not correct within an organization that is either private or public.

    00:31 Now there are two types of whistleblowing.

    00:33 First - internal.

    00:35 This is where our concern is reported within the organization in the hope that the practice will stop and that the patients are protected And then there's external.

    00:44 This is where inside information is provided to the state agency that licenses the healthcare facility, typically without approval from or knowledge of the facility.

    00:54 Now there are important considerations and it require the nurse to be very responsible.

    01:00 You need to have clear evidence that the conduct reported is illegal, unethical and/or unsafe.

    01:08 The report is accurate against not only the facility, bit also against specific individuals.

    01:15 And also the reporting is to correct the harmful conduct.

    01:20 Now some examples of reported acts could include off-label merketing by drug reps, improper use of laboratory or other test to increased payments, upcoding of services provided to increase payment levels, claims of home health visits that really didn't occur, billing for doctors' services when doctors weren't present for the procedure.

    01:41 or improper care of children in state-run mental health facilities.

    01:46 Now there are some risks and challenges.

    01:49 No one likes to have their judgements or their actions questioned Secondly, if you work in teams, you may be fearful to act as a whistleblower for fear of guilt by association.

    02:00 Also, it may impact the ability to find an alternative employment opportunity following the whistleblowing incident.

    02:07 And also, your suspicions may lack the necessary evidence.

    02:12 So it's really important when you're collecting evidence to make sure you do several things.

    02:16 First, clearly document the times, dates, the persons involved and any important facts.

    02:23 Be sure to consider partnering with another individual who's witnessed the act.

    02:28 Due to possible violation of the company's privacy policies, be sure to consult legal counsel before copying any documents.

    02:36 Now the occupational safety and helath act is a federal law that protects workers from retaliation for complaining.

    02:44 In regard to protection, several states have their own occupational health and safety laws and state agencies that enforce them.

    02:52 Now let's discuss the additional considerations.

    02:55 Reserve judgement until you have adequate documentation to establish wrongdoing.

    03:00 You actually have to blow the whistle to be protected in a whistleblower situation for retaliation by your employer.

    03:08 Now any report to a state or national regulator as private groups do not confer protection.

    03:14 This would include organizations such as the joint commission or the national committee for quality assurance.

    03:20 Put your complaint in writing even though it may not be required by every regulatory agency Remain calm and do not lose your temper even if those who learned of your actions attempt to provoke you.

    03:33 Remember, the blowing of whistle is a very serious matter.

    03:37 Do not blow the whistle frivolously.

    03:39 Make sure you have the facts straight before taking action.

    03:43 However, whistleblowing is both an ethical and legal responsibility.

    03:50 So in thinking of everything we've covered today, I'd like you to consider this question.

    03:55 Identify three considerations in regard to whistleblowing.

    04:05 First, have clear evidence that the conduct reported is illegal, unethical and/or unsafe.

    04:12 The report is accurate against not only the facility but against specific individuals And the reporting is to correct the harmful conduct.

    04:21 I hope you've enjoyed watching today's video on whistleblowing.

    04:24 Thanks so much for watching.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Whistleblowing in Nursing – Health Care Law (Nursing) by Christy Davidson is from the course Professionalism (Nursing).

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Internal whistleblowing
    2. Nurse-driven whistleblowing
    3. External whistleblowing
    4. Financial whistleblowing
    1. It protects workers from retaliation for whistleblowing or complaining.
    2. It allows organizations to terminate whistleblowing employees.
    3. It prevents workers' whistleblowing by encouraging health care providers to report any suspicious behavior.
    4. It supports mandating that any whistleblowing complaints be disclosed to the client if they potentially had any impact on their care.
    1. External whistleblowing
    2. Nurse-driven whistleblowing
    3. Internal whistleblowing
    4. Financial whistleblowing

    Author of lecture Whistleblowing in Nursing – Health Care Law (Nursing)

     Christy Davidson

    Christy Davidson

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