Brent's Law
Brent's Law Advice Column
Nancy J. Brent, RN, MS, JD, Nurse.com's legal information columnist, received her Juris Doctor from Loyola University Chicago School of Law and concentrates her solo law practice in health law and legal representation, consultation and education for healthcare professionals, school of nursing faculty and healthcare delivery facilities.

Brent has conducted many seminars on legal issues in nursing and healthcare delivery across the country and has published extensively in the area of law and nursing practice. She brings over 30 years of experience to her role of legal information columnist.

Letters To Nancy showing 1-8 of 80 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Next »
Can a hospital change a shift's hours and give us a 1-hour lunch, but pay us for only half an hour?
Date: Sep 22, 2014 | Nancy Brent
Question - Dear Nancy, I work 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. at a small hospital. We were all notified with a lette..
Nancy Brent replies- Dear Melissa, Your break time and how much of it will be paid is governed by your state law. A consultation with a nurse attorney or other attorney in your state would obtain answ... read more

Should I be worried that my patient, who was confused and at high-risk for falls, fell out of a chair during my shift?
Date: Sep 19, 2014 | Nancy Brent
Question - Dear Nancy, My patient fell when she got out of a chair. She was confused. She broke her h..
Nancy Brent replies- Dear Melva, When a patient is injured under your care, it is a worrisome event. It is impossible to speak to your liability or potential liability for the patient's fall. It would... read more

Does an RN need to carry liability coverage for occasional volunteer activities or responding to inquiries for healthcare advice?
Date: Sep 17, 2014 | Nancy Brent
Question - Dear Nancy, In one of your previous responses, you answered an excellent question about nu..
Nancy Brent replies- Dear Justine, Generally speaking, most states have laws providing immunity from suit for volunteers who work in the settings you describe. The protection may be part of the state ... read more

Does an RN who was fired for placing a PICC line in the same arm where a patient had a shoulder joint infection have any recourse for being fired?
Date: Sep 15, 2014 | Nancy Brent
Question - Dear Nancy, I am a PICC nurse with a CRNI. A colleague was fired because she placed a PICC..
Nancy Brent replies- Dear Marilyn, As you know, one of the complications of a PICC line can be infection. If one develops, the infection can easily spread into the blood stream causing a severe infect... read more

What is the legal responsibility for medical mission nurses working as volunteers in developing countries?
Date: Sep 12, 2014 | Nancy Brent
Question - Dear Nancy, What is the legal responsibility for medical mission nurses working as volunte..
Nancy Brent replies- Dear Ellen, A response to your question is beyond the scope of this column and is further complicated by the fact that medical missionary projects go to many different countries o... read more

When charting an electronic medical record, do you chart as I, RN, writer or some other designation?
Date: Sep 10, 2014 | Nancy Brent
Question - Dear Nancy, When charting an electronic medical record, where your name is clearly visible..
Nancy Brent replies- Dear May, When documenting patient care in any patient record, the overall objective is to make sure the reader knows the "who, what, where, why and how" of patient care. The "who... read more

Is it worth fighting a termination I believe was unwarranted even though it occured six months ago?
Date: Sep 8, 2014 | Nancy Brent
Question - Dear Nancy, I had a medical problem that caused me to exhaust my light duty prior to havin..
Nancy Brent replies- Dear Kate, It is never a waste of time to obtain a consultation with a nurse attorney or other attorney in your state who works with employees to determine if you might have a leg... read more

What can a manager, HR or others in a hospital say to potential employers about a nurse who was fired from that facility?
Date: Sep 5, 2014 | Nancy Brent
Question - Dear Nancy, I am unemployed after being fired from my job at a community hospital where I ..
Nancy Brent replies- Dear Florence, Being terminated from a position is a humiliating experience and it is unfortunate this happened after you worked at the facility for so many years. It is difficult... read more

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*Due to the sheer volume of questions received, Nancy Brent cannot answer every question or respond privately to any questions. All questions answered will appear on Nurse.com, and some may be printed in Gannett Healthcare Group publications. Last names and e-mail addresses will be omitted.
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