Should nurses go to prison for medical mistakes? Case sparks debate.

RaDonda Vaught, 38, an ex-nurse from Tennessee whose medication mistake killed a patient was send to prison for 3 years of trial on Friday as hundreds of medical staff assembled outside the court, cautioning that criminalizing such errors will lead to more demises in hospitals.

A state magistrate executed the verdict on the nurse after she asks for forgiveness to relatives of the victim, Charlene Murphey, and said that she’ll be always haunted by her error. Vaught was found guilty in March of illegally neglectful killing and gross carelessness of an impaired adult after she unintentionally administered the incorrect medicine.

Jennifer Smith, Nashville Criminal Court Judge said Vaught would get legal diversion, a way for first-time lawbreakers to have their charges let fall and their records erased after effectively finishing probation. Prosecuting attorney had contended against diversion, while they were not conflicting to probation.

The mob of nurses outside opposing applauded, wept and hugged after hearing the verdict. The respite came after the health care workers spent hours in the sun and adhered to every single word of the judge’s extensive sentencing clarification.

The point that Vaught faced any illegal consequences at all has turn out to be a uniting point for many nurses who were by now fed up with reduced working conditions worsened by the pandemic. The mob outside attended to the hearing through loudspeakers and applauded when some of the victim’s families said they wouldn’t want prison time for Vaught.

Vaught ask for forgiveness to the family in court, saying words will certainly not entirely express her regret and grief. She said that she will be always haunted by her part in the ill-timed passing of the victim.

In evaluating whether to award Vaught legal diversion, Smith quoted Vaught’s regret as well as her righteousness about the treatment mistake.

Talking before she was penalised, Vaught ask for forgiveness to Murphey’s family if the debate of universal hospital glitches and the hazard of criminalizing errors took some kindness away from the demise of their loved one.

After Vaught was found guilty in March, medical staff initiated posting to social media that there were parting bedside nursing for managerial positions or even leaving the occupation overall. They said the danger of going to jail for a error has made nursing unbearable.

On Friday, Vaught’s followers sported purple T-shirts reading “#IAmRaDonda” and “Seeking Justice for Nurses and Patients in a BROKEN system,” as they attended to speeches from other nurses and supporters. They also held a moment of silence to think of Charlene Murphey.

Aleece Ellison journeyed from Texas to join them. An emergency room nurse for 14 years, she said she broke down crying when Vaught was found guilty.

Nurse sentenced to three years probation

RaDonda Vaught, convicted of criminally negligent homicide, faces three years of probation for giving a patient the wrong medication.

Posted by Good Morning America on Saturday, May 14, 2022

Janie Reed, who drove all the way from Memphis, said that she turn out to be a nurse practitioner several years ago since bedside nursing was getting risky as there were certainly not sufficient nurses. Janie said that if nurses are going to go to prison, additional people are going to pass away because nurses then won’t report their mistakes.

Vaught testified her fault as soon as she recognized what she had done wrong. She inoculated the paralyzing medicine vecuronium instead of the tranquilizing Versed into 75-year-old Charlene Murphey on Dec. 26, 2017. Vaught confessed making numerous mistakes that led to the deadly injection, but her defense advocate debated that general glitches at Vanderbilt University Medical Center were at least partially to blame.

Talking at the Friday trial, Michael Murphey spoke of the toll his mother’s demise has had on the family. He was at work when all this happened, so he didn’t get to say bye to his mother. He said that he didn’t get to give her a hug or a kiss. Michael further said that his 83 year old father grieves every day from this. He goes to the burial ground one or two times a week and cries.

Michael’s wife, Chandra Murphey also attested on Friday about the way things were before her mother-in-law pass away. Chandra recalls that they always used to get together for family dinners. They did so much together as a family and it just finished in a split second for them. She said that they still have her Christmas gifts in their roof space enveloped.

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