Duty to Report

Take this quiz and test your knowledge!

Click on an answer below to receive feedback.

You are an LPN working in a long term care facility. You witness an RN hitting a resident on the head with a hairbrush after the resident spat on her. What is the first most appropriate action for you to take?

 

A: Make a formal complaint about the RN to CRNBC.

That’s not correct. In this situation where the RN has physically abused the resident, your first action is to inform your supervisor. However, if your supervisor does not report, you must make a direct report to CRNBC. See the Duty to Report Practice Standard for more information.

B: Report your observation to your supervisor immediately.

That’s Correct! LPNs may report incompetent or impaired practice or unethical conduct to their supervisor, who will then report to the appropriate regulatory body. However, if the supervisor does not report, you must make a direct report to CRNBC. See Principle 2 in the Duty to Report Practice Standard.

C: Ignore the situation but keep an eye on the RN’s performance.

That’s not correct. As a regulated professional you have a legal and ethical obligation to act immediately based on the information you have. See the Duty to Report Practice Standard for more information.

D: Report your concerns to the union representative for your facility.

That’s not correct. In this situation where the RN has physically abused the resident, your first action is to inform your supervisor, then either you or your supervisor must report the incident to CRNBC. The union may become involved later on. See the Duty to Report Practice Standard for more information.

Licensed Practical Nurses have legal and ethical duties to report incompetent or impaired practice or unethical conduct of regulated health professionals. It is important for nurses to understand when to report, what to report and how to report, and to know what is required of them both legally and ethically. Understand that a report is required even if the health professional takes steps to end the situation, for example by resigning before concerns about his or her practice are resolved. Please see the Duty to Report Practice Standard for more information.

Photo courtesy of Penn State