General Assessment and Forensic Nursing, comment

As home care nurses we are also in an ideal position to identify victims of abuse and neglect. It is our responsibility to assess this on the initial admission visit and to question the patient if they are currently being threatened or are afraid of someone. We also ask if within the last year they have been hit, slapped, kicked or forced into sexual activity. Unfortunately, there have been occasions of known abuse but the patient denies any, even when questioned further. This is when quality nursing assessment skills come into play to identify possible injuries from abuse or neglect. We then try to alternate times of our nursing visits to continually assess for any violence. At this point we usually order a MSW evaluation for further assessment and questioning and to provide information on community resources. If the patient is of sound mind sometimes as health professionals our hands are tied.Original PostApril 17, 2008Title: General Assessment and Forensic NursingURL: nursing was recognized as a specialty by ANA in 1995. I believe nurses have long worked with forensic patients in other areas such as emergency room, operating room and general areas where admission assessments are done. Primary care nurses are in an ideal position to identify victims of abuse and violence and hopefully refer to agency for help to prevent future abuse or injury. At present I work in an area with surgery patients, it is part of our assessment to screen all patients for abuse, neglect and asking the patient if they are being threatened. If a patient is positive for above, we refer to an agency, involve the legal system and social services.This is so important to include identification of trauma or abuse from living patients to hopefully save a life. Nurses share a responsibility in caring for the holistic approach of patients hopefully saving a life, whereas forensic nursing is a patient advocate for the deceased or the victim.Healthcare Online Education ConsultantFor Healthful Links and more information, click here.

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