Role of the Expert Witness

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a. A fact witness testifies to direct observations made. b. He or she does not offer expert opinions or draw conclusions from reports but may offer opinion and certainly clarify information. c. In order to become an expert witness, the nurses has to answer questions regarding training, experience and specialized knowledge. A curriculum vita is helpful. d. The nurse specialist must have expertise, trustworthiness and presentational style to have credibility. e. Expertise is established by one’s credentials, including academic background, professional training, experience, and professional association. f. Trustworthiness as perceived by the judge or jury is the degree of honesty in one’s demeanor and opinion. The jury perceives the witness as trustworthy if he or she remains calm, unruffled and cooperative. g. Presentational style includes dress, demeanor and the ability to communicate. h. The presentation should be forth succinctly, clearly, thoughtfully and professionally. i. Dress should be conservative. References Lynch, Virginia A. and Duval, Janet Barber. (2006). Forensic Nursing. St. Louis: Elsevier Mosby

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