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ANZ Health Policy

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Article << Previous     |     Next >>   Contents Vol 22(3)

The expanded role of acute care nurses: The issue of liability

Wendy Chaboyer, Kim Forrester and Denise Harris

Australian Health Review 22(3) 110 - 117
Published: 1999


For a variety of reasons the activities performed by health care professionals are everincreasing, however the legislative process regulating these specialised workers is not keepingup with the practice realities. While competency statements and credentialling mechanismsare developing, they are not uniformly in place for specialists. Therefore activities completedby these practitioners may be legally controversial. This study documents a variety of taskscompleted independently by nurses employed in three acute care hospitals that legally requiremedical orders and then examines the legal implications of this role extension. Credentiallingis one mechanism by which nurses and other health care professionals can ensure they possessthe levels of knowledge and skill required to perform the advanced activities required of themand consequently avoid negative legal repercussions.

Full text doi:10.1071/AH990110

© AHHA 1999

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