Archive for the ‘law’ Category

When is unethical behaviour by a nurse not a matter of ‘nursing ethics’?

From the Wisconsin State Journal: “Nurse disciplined for using donor program credit card for personal use”

A registered nurse who used a Neenah hospital’s organ donor program credit card to take cruises and vacations with her husband has been disciplined by the state Board of Nursing.

The board suspended the license of Peggy Grambsch, of Poy Sippi, for six months on Jan. 26. It also ordered Grambsch to take a nursing ethics course and pay $750….

It’s hard to blame the board for requiring that Grambsch take an ethics course. But it’s hardly likely to be the right remedy here. First, the behaviour she engaged in is, as far a I can see, a matter of outright criminality, rather than subtly unethical behaviour. Secondly, to the extent that there are ethical issues here — misappropriation of funds is of course unethical, in addition to being illegal — I suspect such issues are not covered in most nursing ethics courses. If I were on that board, I would have insisted on a business ethics course, especially one with a section on financial integrity and ethics in the workplace.

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