Archive for the ‘Forensic Nurse’s Attitude’ Category

Deterrent to Nashville TN Crime

August 10, 2014
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“A learned society recognizes that the most critical aspect in need of change is the parenting and socialization of its children”. (Lynch, p27). Is it any wonder that the crime runs rampant? Parents that both need to work, their children often left on their own after school, computer games depicting violence, movies that make killing, sex, steeling ok. What is the message we are send to our children? That these things are OK to do as long as you don’t get caught? Without teaching our children what is acceptable behavior, and what the expectation of them is, they are free to do as they please. Our prisons are full of people who believed that they are not responsible for their actions; rather it was the situation they found themselves in that has caused their incarceration. I believe that learned behavior from childhood plays a big part in how children develop as adults. In a world that seems overwhelming to parents, children are often a throw away commodity. It then becomes incumbent on society to correct the problems. Prisons overflow, death sentences are not a deterrent, rehabbing people so they may reenter society and become useful, productive citizens and so on and so on, with no end in sight. Neighborhoods make a big difference in the success of our children.

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Is it Necessary to Document Your Efforts in Providing Culturally Competent Care?

April 5, 2013

Cultural competence has been a responsibility addressed in nursing programs since before I became a student and I have noticed a steadily increasing amount of focus placed on the topic throughout the years. As with all aspects of nursing (including forensic nursing), there will always be room for improvement in how we conduct our profession in a culturally sensitive manner. It seems to be a basic understanding that any nurse be acutely aware of his or her own cultural beliefs, practices and biases. I also notice universal agreement that health care professionals need to attempt to learn about all clients’ cultural attitudes towards healthcare and allow for specific integration of these attitudes when at all possible. As this is a responsibility of the health care professional, is documentation of the practice necessary as well? Cultural competence can be applied in forensic nursing and all aspects of nursing care; so documenting the practice is very complicated. Much discussion will be needed to determine how it can be applied to daily documentation without taking excessive time from other nursing responsibilities. A basic need of clients is to have their healthcare options given to them in their first language to maximize the potential for full understanding. Hospitals have addressed this need in a variety of ways including written translation of informed consent and having native speaking interpreters present during any medical explanation before “informed consent” is given. The practice of providing culturally sensitive care is then “documented” by the presence of the signed translated copy of the consent or the presence of the interpreter’s signature on the English version of the consent. The cost to health care providers in both the areas of finance and time is great to accommodate these needs. Therefore, the value of our current practice should be continuously evaluated in order to assure we meet the needs of the client without excessive cost. Value is the key word in this sentence. In the case of the written translated consent form, I have seen consents get signed without being read and this has forced me to think about the various reasons this might occur. Could the client read the consent? Although the consent was in the language self-identified by the client, was the terminology not familiar to the client? Were the opinion and “desires” of the healthcare professional deemed sufficient and therefore explanation not required? The signed consent, however, is placed in the client’s chart and acts as documentation that the client was explained the procedure in a manner facilitating understanding. Healthcare facilities are also managing costs by trying to minimize the amount of paper used in documenting. I have seen consents presented to clients in the form of laptop computers with electronic writing devices. Does this technology intimidate the patient and further compromise their comfort during their healthcare experience? I am sure the answers to the questions posed above are as varied as are the cultures and people of those cultures seeking healthcare in this country. Is it really of value, then, to “document” all of our efforts in providing culturally competent care? Or rather, should we seek to create an environment in healthcare settings where continued education and discussion enhances the healthcare professional’s awareness of the need for culturally competent care? This in turn might increase our accountability to this responsibility without further straining the healthcare system with the financial and emotional stress of balancing the application of good care with the documentation of the process.

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Areas of knowledge needed

May 12, 2009

The position of clinical forensic nurse covers alot of areas, such as bio-psycho-socio-spiritual-cultural and legal disciplines. The clinical forensic nurse must be aware of boundaries of all the disciplines. You must be able to provide empathy to people who display negative human behavior, non-judgemental. Inocent until proven guilty. One area which challenges health practioners, is pain involving violation of the human spirit. If you go through a traumatic/criminal experience and survive, you may be physically here and alive but yet your inner self is hurt, violated and/or impaired. This leads to dysfunction. Being it in your daily living, your thought process etc. This is where nursing has a hand above due to our past training and experiences. We are taught to look at the big picture and not just one problem. The focus has to be on the whole person not just what is physically apparent. This is where your psycho, socio and spiritual training comes in. We (nurses) are better equipped to deal with this than law enforcement. We help our vicitims with coping mechanisms, get them the support, education and nurturing that they may need to recover. The nurse must always remain aware of ethical and legal issues that pertains to each case. The nurse is accountable for her behavior actions and treatments, all of which are subject to criminal or civil law actions. The nurse is accountable to the public, patient, her profession and the law.

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