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What surgical and office nurses do for patients

Aug 30, 2017 | Surgical Errors

When New York patients need to have a procedure or surgery done to improve their health, they are often most concerned with who their surgeon will be. What they may not realize, however, is that it is the nurses, including surgical and patient nurses, who get to know the patients best.

Even if a surgeon is skilled and knowledgeable, he or she may have too many patients to get to know each one’s unique circumstances well. This is where the surgical nurses come in. These healthcare professionals are often in charge of following up with patients. Further, some nurses are actually in the operating room with the surgeon while the procedure is being completed. They help provide an additional level of protection and expertise, especially because they are typically more aware of each patient’s specific issues.

Although they do not go into the operating rooms, office nurses also play an important role when it comes to keeping patients safe. They interview the patient before the surgery begins, determine what symptoms they have and what goals the patients are looking for. They also often double-check medications and dressings given to patients after surgery, helping to reduce certain medical mistakes that can occur. If something does go wrong, an office nurse is often the first person to know and respond.

Even if a patient has a good surgeon and nursing team, surgical errors and other medical complications can still occur. If these errors are not corrected in a timely matter or they result in serious, life-impacting complications, the injured patient may have a valid medical malpractice claim against the surgeon and the hospital where the procedure was completed. An attorney could determine if the claim is valid and if the patient could potentially seek compensation for additional medical costs, emotional damages and, depending on the circumstances, punitive damages.