AAOS Emergency Care and Transportation of the Sick and Injured, Tenth Edition, Chapter 3: Medical, Legal, and Ethical Issues

abandonment
Unilateral termination of care by the EMT without the patient’s consent and without making provisions for transferring care to another medical professional with the skills and training necessary to meet the needs of the patient.

advance directive
Written documentation that specifies medical treatment for a competent patient should the patient become unable to make decisions; also called a living will or health care directive.

applied ethics
The manner in which principles of ethics are incorporated into professional conduct.

assault
Unlawfully placing a patient in fear of bodily harm.

battery
Touching a patient or providing emergency care without consent.

bioethics
The study of ethics related to issues that arise in health care.

breach of confidentiality
Disclosure of information without proper authorization.

certification
A process in which a person, an institution, or a program is evaluated and recognized as meeting certain predetermined standards to provide safe and ethical care.

compensatory damages
Damages awarded in a civil suit that are intended to restore the plaintiff to the same condition that he or she was in prior to the incident complained about in the lawsuit.

competent
Able to make rational decisions about personal well-being.

consent
Permission to render care.

contributory negligence
A legal defense that may be raised when the defendant feels tat the conduct of the plaintiff somehow contributed to any injuries or damages that were sustained by the plaintiff.

decision making capacity
Ability to understand and process information and make a choice regarding appropriate medical care.

defamation
The communication of false information about a person that is damaging to that person’s reputation or standing in the community.

dependent lividity
Blood settling to the lowest point of the body, causing discoloration of the skin.

depositions
Oral questions asked of parties and witnesses under oath.

discovery
The phase of a civil suit where the plaintiff and defense obtain information from each other that will enable the attorneys to have a better understanding of the case and which will assist in negotiating a possible settlement or in preparing for trial. Discovery includes depositions, interrogatories, and demands for production of records.

do not resuscitate (DNR) orders
Written documentation by a physician giving permission to medical personnel to not attempt resuscitation in the event of cardiac arrest.

durable power of attorney for health care
A type of advance directive executed by a competent adult that appoints another individual to make medical treatment decisions on his or her behalf in the event that the person making the appointment loses decision making capacity.

duty to act
A medicolegal term relating to certain personnel who either by statute or by function have responsibility to provide care.

emancipated minors
A person who is under the legal age in a given state but, because of other circumstances, is legally considered an adult.

emergency
A serious situation, such as an injury or illness, that threatens the life or welfare of a person or group of people and requires immediate intervention.

emergency doctrine
The principle of law that permits a health provider to treat a patient in an emergency situation when the patient is incapable of granting consent because of an altered level of consciousness, disability, the effects of drugs or alcohol, or the patient’s age.

emergency medical care
Immediate care or treatment.

ethics
The philosophy of right and wrong, of moral duties, and of ideal professional behavior.

expressed consent
A type of consent in which a patient gives express authorization for provision of care or transport.

false imprisonment
The confinement of a person without legal authority or the person’s consent.

forcible restraint
The act of physically preventing an individual from initiating any physical action.

Good Samaritan laws
Statutory provisions enacted by many states to protect citizens from liability for errors and omissions in giving good faith emergency medical care, unless there is wanton, gross, or willful negligence.

governmental immunity
If your service is covered by immunity, it may mean that you cannot be sued or it may limit the amount of the monetary judgment that the plaintiff may recover; generally applies only to EMS services that are operated by municipalities or other governmental entities.

gross negligence
Conduct that constitutes a willful or reckless disregard for a duty or standard of care.

health care directive
A written document that specifies medical treatment for a competent patient, should he or she become unable to make decisions. Also known as an advance directive or a living will.

health care proxies
A type of advance directive executed by a competent adult that appoints another individual to make medical treatment decisions on his or her behalf in the event that the person making the appointment loses decision making capacity. Also known as a durable power of attorney for health care.

implied consent
Type of consent in which a patient who is unable to give consent is given treatment under the legal assumption that he or she would want treatment.

informed consent
Permission for treatment given by a competent patient after the potential risks, benefits, and alternatives to treatment have been explained.

in loco parentis
Refers to the legal responsibility of a person or organization to take on some of the functions and responsibilities of a parent.

interrogatories
Written questions that the defense and plaintiff send to one another.

advanced EMT (AEMT) An individual who has training in specific aspects of advanced life support, such as intravenous therapy, and the administration of certain emergency medications. advanced life support (ALS) Advanced lifesaving procedures, some of which are now being provided …

adolescents Children between 12 to 18 years of age. apparent life-threatening event (ALTE) An event that causes unresponsiveness, cyanosis and apnea in an infant who then resumes breathing with stimulation. WE WILL WRITE A CUSTOM ESSAY SAMPLE ON ANY TOPIC …

Abdomen The body cavity that contains the major organs of digestion and excretion. It is located below the diaphragm and above the pelvis. abduction Motion of a limb away from the midline. WE WILL WRITE A CUSTOM ESSAY SAMPLE ON …

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Ethical Dilemma Warning Signs -emotionally charged -significant change in pt’s condition -confusion about facts -hesitancy about what’s right -deviation from customary practice -need for secrecy regarding proposed actions Ethical Decision-Making Process 1) assess 2) consider options 3) develop plan 4) …

Permission to treat an unconscious patient until he/she becomes conscious Implied consent A written order given by the physician based upon a decision by a patient prior to his/her demise Advance directive WE WILL WRITE A CUSTOM ESSAY SAMPLE ON …

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