Robyn Begley, chief nursing officer for the AHA and CEO of the American Organization for Nursing Leadership, today issued a statement in response to a decision Friday in a Tennessee trial that convicted a nurse who made a fatal drug error of criminally negligent homicide.

“The verdict in this tragic case will have a chilling effect on the culture of safety in health care,” Begley said. “The Institute of Medicine’s landmark report ‘To Err Is Human’ concluded that we cannot punish our way to safer medical practices. We must instead encourage nurses and physicians to report errors so we can identify strategies to make sure they don’t happen again. Criminal prosecutions for unintentional acts are the wrong approach. They discourage health caregivers from coming forward with their mistakes, and will complicate efforts to retain and recruit more people in to nursing and other health care professions that are already understaffed and strained by years of caring for patients during the pandemic.”
 

Related News Articles

Chairperson's File
The mission of all hospitals and health systems, regardless of size and location, is to provide quality care to patients and advance health in their…
Headline
Hospital and health system leaders Jan. 31 received an email from the AHA and its Institute for Diversity and Health Equity requesting their participation in…
Headline
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released a five-part webinar series on its Hospital Sepsis Program Core Elements, which offer guidance to…
Headline
AHA Dec. 1 urged the Food and Drug Administration not to apply its device regulations to hospital and health system laboratory developed tests. Commenting…
Perspective
Patient safety and top-notch patient care have always been the twin guide stars of our field. Hospitals and health systems have led the way in making bold…
Blog
In health care, where decisions can be life-altering and regulatory policies help shape care quality and delivery, board members play a pivotal role in…