Medical Negligence And Malpractice In Nursing Essay Example


The prime concern in nursing is to promote the welfare of the sick, the injured or vulnerable members of the community. In particular, nursing is primarily concerned with the protection and restoration of individual health, preventing disease-related sufferings, and prevention of illnesses. Nurses play an important role in the promotion of individual and community healthcare (Crane, 2000, p.86). Nurses, therefore, must adhere to the highest ideals and professional ethics of nursing practice to prevent medical errors or negligence. Medical errors arise from lack of appropriate skills or knowledge on the part of the practitioner or failure to apply professional skills or knowledge appropriately as expected. In most cases, medical errors cause personal injury or even death of the patient, thus an offence in the court of law. In a nursing home, nurses are expected to ensure that the patients are safe and in good health by proper administration of the right prescriptive drugs to the patients. Typically, nursing negligence or malpractice arises from the inability of the nurse to administer proper treatment due to lack of proper documentation, failure to monitor the patients effectively during medical procedures, and the failure to notice improvement in the patient’s condition. Given the legal and professional implications of nursing malpractice, nursing documentation is integral in minimizing medical errors arising from negligence.

Negligence, Gross Negligence and Malpractice

Medical errors have an adverse impact on the general health of the patient. Medical errors arise from medical negligence or malpractice, which often make victims demand compensation over personal injury. A medical error in the course of a medical procedure or during administration of drugs can turn a highly treatable condition into a permanent disability. Wrongful prescription or improper medical procedures amount to medical negligence or medical malpractice. Negligence and malpractice are often used interchangeably; however, negligence is different from malpractice.

Medical negligence is a more general term that refers to carelessness in care provision or the inability of a practitioner to adhere to particular standards of the expected care. Negligence arises when a person, charged with the responsibility of providing care to a patient, acts in a non-competent manner; that is, below the recognized healthcare standards (Croke, 2003, p.54).. As a result, the practitioner’s lack of reasonable and expected action causes harm to the patient. Legally, the patient is entitled to compensation for personal injury, pain, and suffering caused by the practitioner’s negligence. However, the patient has to prove negligence from the part of the practitioner, which resulted to personal injury. In most cases, negligence is proved by first identifying negligence on the part of the practitioner(s) responsible for the duty of care followed by establishing a breach of duty by the practitioner.

Gross negligence goes beyond simple carelessness on the part of the practitioner or caregiver. While regular medical negligence entails simple carelessness that results to below expected standard actions, gross negligence implies a serious form of negligence whereby the practitioner fails to show care to the patient with total and willful disregard of the patient’s safety and wellbeing (Croke, 2003, p.58). Common cases of gross negligence include failure to uphold the highest standards of safety and sanitation resulting to disease outbreaks or failure to dress wounds which might lead to secondary infections. Gross negligence cases can attract a legal suit over medical malpractices on the part of the hospital or medical practitioner.

In contrast, medical malpractice is more specific and considers the professional status of the caregiver. In this regard, a professional medical practitioner is the only person who can be held responsible for medical malpractice (Crane, 2000, p.89). Medical malpractice arises due to failure of a professional practitioner to take appropriate action in accordance to the expected professional standards or inappropriate delegation of duties with inadequate supervision. A professional practitioner is expected to possess necessary skills and knowledge to foresee the consequences of a particular action ad therefore, can take appropriate actions to prevent medical errors. Legally, to prove medical malpractice, the breach of duty owed to the patient must be established followed by proof that the practitioner failed to foresee the consequences of a particular action resulting to medical errors.

The article in the NBH Newspaper, “Amputation Mishap; Negligence” represents a perfect case of gross negligence on the part of the practitioners. The practitioners involved in the amputation showed recklessness by failing to keep proper documentation of medical procedures, which resulted into the amputation of the wrong leg. In addition, the surgeon disregarded Benson’s safety and wellbeing by amputating the wrong leg, which will result to permanent injury.

I agree with the author’s views that the wrong amputation of Benson’s left leg, instead of the right leg, was negligence on the part of the surgeon. This action fell below the standards expected from a professional surgeon. A surgeon, being a professional with necessary skills and education, is expected to understand the particulars of a surgical procedure prior to undertaking it given the consequences of any wrongful action. Therefore, in the case of Benson, the surgeon recklessly amputated the wrong leg without checking the proper documentation, which amounts to gross medical negligence.

Importance of Nursing Documentation

In nursing, patient records are important in effecting appropriate health care plan. Nursing documentation or records entails handwritten or electronic patient information that describes the health status of the patient and the care service to be provided to that patient (Plawecki, & Plawecki, 2007, p.3). Usually, nurses document health information pertaining to an individual patient. However, health records of group of patients such as therapy groups can also be kept. Documentation provides a clear picture of the health condition of the patient or group of patients, the expected actions of the caregiver and the evaluation of the patient(s) outcomes.

Nursing documentation is important for many reasons; firstly, it facilitates communication between nurses or care givers regarding the health status of the patient, the interventions undertaken, and the outcomes that result from these interventions. In chapter eight of his masterpiece book, “Legal and Ethical Issues in Nursing” Guido (2010) overemphasizes the need of proper communication in nursing practices (p.209), because nursing documentation prevents any likelihood of miscommunication and thus prevents medical errors. Secondly, documentation leads to improved nursing care provided to patients. Through documentation, nurses can evaluate patients’ progress, determine appropriate interventions, and plan for health care needs of the patient. In addition, documents or health records provide valuable information for nursing research, which leads to improvement in the quality of nursing practice and patient care. Thirdly, nursing documentation is important for meeting the professional and legal standards expected in any nursing practice (Plawecki, & Plawecki, 2007, p.4). Effective documentation provides evidence that a nurse acted professionally in his/her judgment and application of skills. In lawsuits, the patient health records provide evidence of health care service accorded to the patient relative to the professional care expected.


In nursing, medical errors often result from negligence or failure of the practitioners to uphold the highest standards of the nursing practice. Medical errors attract lawsuits because of personal injury or death resulting from negligence. Gross negligence such as wrongful amputation of the leg, as in Benson’s case, can be avoided through proper documentation. Documentation minimizes the potential of medical errors occurring, leads to professional nursing practice, and contributes to improved care to patients.

Reference List

Crane, M. (2000). NPs and PAs: What’s the malpractice risk? Medical Economics, 77(6), 86-89.

Croke, E. (2003). Nurses, Negligence, and Malpractice. American Journal of Nursing, 103(9), 54-58.

Guido, G. W. (2010).Legal and Ethical issues in nursing (5th Ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Plawecki, L., & Plawecki, H. (2007).Your Choice, Documentation or Litigation? Journal Of Gerontological Nursing, 16(4), 3-4.

Changes Expected In The Field Of Criminal Justice


Change is a crucial element of criminal justice management due to the reality that a number of hitches are still present in the courts. For example, in January 2006, a United States judge punished a suspect on the grounds of ethnic leaning. The judge did this as he saw it essential to punish the suspect for embarrassing Martin Luther King. Lots of judges, law enforcers, and other justice administrators are biased on racial or ethnic grounds and this holds back the administration of fairness in a great way (Livinstone, 2002, p. 6).

Technology in the criminal justice system needs to move with the times if satisfactory results are desired. The strategies that are used to nail criminals as well need to keep up with the latest tactics that these crooks device. Once criminals have been brought to book, the justice system needs to utilize any resources possible to establish the reason as to why such people resorted to doing whatever they did. This is in a bid to curb vices and thwart their future occurrence(s). Reform is required in the way that criminals are handled once they have been nailed for the simple fact that in as much as they are offenders, they remain human.

The matter of judge choosing is as well essential within the criminal justice structure and has as well been contentious for some time now. A lot of stakeholders are of the idea that this calls for reform(s) so that fairness is seen to prevail. Improper selection of case arbitrators means that there are persons who sit in the panel of judges but do not meet the criteria required. As a result, a lot of suspects appearing before such unqualified professionals may receive the wrong judgment.

Changes expected

One of the foremost sectors where change is expected in a big way is the taking up of technology. Law enforcement units will have to employ more complex techniques to take into custody offenders. This is the case because as time goes by, criminals are not expected to commit offences in conformist ways (Harcout, 2001, p. 14). They, in one way or another, will device new avenues and means of committing crime and thus, the necessity of the law enforcement units to keep up.

In addition to this, new policing tactics have to be employed to beat the law-breakers at their own game. The law enforcement units will have to work hand in hand with the community as they keep an eye on criminal hotspots. This is due to the fact that the community around where certain offences take place is, in point of fact, the most dependable gamble in opposition to would-be law breakers. The people who reside in a given area know the probable threat regions and possible suspects. By way of this tactic, law enforcers will turn out to be practical as opposed to being reactive, which is the case at the moment. In areas where it has been practiced, it has yielded positive results.

In reaction to the requirement to act in response to mental grounds for carrying out offences, courts will need to deal with these factors by way of taking on reforms. They will have to carry this out by turning out to be problem resolving courts. This means there will have to be community tribunals. Such tribunals will be tasked with passing judgments geared toward reforming offenders and safeguarding the public. In addition, such mechanisms will be crafted such that they establish that the basis for committing offences is classified and that such offences will not be seen in the future. Such community tribunals will largely reform and bring about helpful results in places where they will be set up.

In close association with the above expectation, the detention departments are expected to take up improved mechanisms for dealing with law-breakers. They will be expected to adopt a number of new tactics that attempt to set up reforms through working with various classifications of offenders. Such classifications include repeat lawbreakers and high risk lawbreakers. In the past and even in current times, these are classes of lawbreakers that are taken to be untouchable and the assumption is the criminal justice mechanism can do virtually nothing to reform them for the better (Richman, 2003, p. 145). On the other hand, following the setting up of changes in punitive institutions, it will be possible to deal with such forms of criminals by way of officially authorized means. These changes comprise of an application of given tried means for dealing with such kind of lawbreakers. They will involve intricate management courses that have yielded positively in other sectors of psychology.


It has been shown that as time has moved by there have occurred changes in the way lawbreakers carry out their acts. Consequently, the institutions tasked with dealing with such offenders have got to adopt reforms to ensure that they deal effectively with the offenders. The changes discussed here are widely expected to have a positive impact in dealing with crime and the offenders.

Reference List

Harcout, B. (2001). “The false promise of broken windows policing.” Crime and Criminology journal. pp 3 – 56.

Livinstone, D. (2002). “Police and the discretion.” Crime and criminology. pp 6 – 97.

Richman, D. (2003). “Past, present and future of crime federalism.” Crime and Justice. pp 12 – 145.

Woolworths And Coles Supermarkets Marketing Analysis


The two selected supermarkets are Woolworths and Coles, which are two of the largest retail chains in the market. The latter can be considered a local supermarket due to the fact that it is headquartered in Melbourne. On the other hand, Woolworths is a multinational chain that is originally from South Africa. It should be noted that despite the difference in place of origin, Woolworth is ideally the largest supermarket in Australia with approximately 900 stores compared to Coles 800. Critically, whereas the two are the largest in the market, Australia boasts of various retail chains/supermarkets, making the said environment highly competitive.

The fact that Woolworths has more stores also ensures that its scope of operations is larger compared to that of Coles. For instance, the former has sources for more products due to the higher number of physical stores it has compared to the latter. Interestingly, the number of employees in the two stores differs only slightly despite the over 100 store difference. Whereas Woolworths has approximately 115,000 employees, Coles has 100,000. The stated premise is critical in understanding some of the marketing distinctions the two companies support. It can be argued that whereas Coles’ marketing focuses more on the clientele and consumer support, Woolworth’s focuses on the products and range offered.

A quick assessment of the marketing approaches of the two companies reveals that they have both similarities and differences. For instance, one similarity is that they have invested in marketing their products both traditionally and digitally. On the other hand, a key difference is their distribution. The paper will analyze the two companies in regards to their segmentation and targeting, positioning and differentiation, promotional mix, and distribution.

Segmentation and Targeting

Debatably, the two selected supermarket retail giants, Woolworths and Coles, explore different targeting strategies. Woolworths uses concentrated marketing, which is also referred to as niche marketing. Ray and Yin (2019) argue that this strategy focuses on a few selected segments of the larger target population. In the case of Woolworth, the difference between the niche is age. However, the unifying factor is that the company targets wealthy or high-income individuals. On the other hand, Coles uses an undifferentiated targeting strategy. According to Schlegelmilch (2016), this type of approach usually offers one element that is deemed of value to the larger population. Coles’ main feature is affordable or cheap products. The supermarket’s taglines include phrases such as “why pay more” (Pride and Ferrell, 2015) showing that it focuses on providing inexpensive products for all types of clients.

One can clearly identify the market segments that are targeted by the two companies based on their strategies. It is arguable that both companies have used psychographic segmentation (Baker and Hart, 2016). Coles targets low-income earners and people who appreciate saving when they shop. On the other hand, Woolworths, as stated earlier, targets high-income earners. Arguably, the segmentation used is sustainable for both supermarkets as they target different types of people within the same market. Whereas Coles gets its profit from moving large masses of products, Woolworths uses high pricing to improve its bottom line. One can identify a similarity in the strategy used for segmentation (that is psychographic). However, the niche targeted is different in both companies, where Woolworths targets the wealthy while Coles focuses on low income earning individuals and families.

Differentiation and Positioning

In order to understand the differentiation and positioning strategies used by both companies, one has to first appreciate when both stores entered the market. Whereas Coles opened its first stores in 1914, Woolworths entered the Australian market in 1924, ten years later. It is arguable that Coles had already differentiated the market and created a niche for itself by the time Woolworth was penetrating the market. Thus, the two have used the same strategy since their inception into the market. As mentioned earlier, the two companies target different segments of the population and this can be perceived as the first point of differentiation. Coles’ competitive edge is based on the fact that it offers lower prices compared to Woolworths and other supermarkets in the region. Due to this, it attracts low- and middle-income earners in the population. Their approach offers value to their target audience as it allows them to spend less in shopping.

On the other hand, Woolworth’s competitive edge is quality. The supermarket describes its product as high quality, thus, the higher price. Interestingly, this aspect is of value to the target audience (the wealthy/high-income earners) as they prefer to pay more for quality products and convenience. Therefore, a key similarity between the two companies is that they offer value to their target audiences. However, a critical difference lies in the fact that they have completely separate niches.

A possible positioning statement for Woolworths is “quality fresh products right from Australia’s back yard.” Debatably, the position statement for Coles should be “affordable fresh vegetables for the whole family.” Arguably, one can already tell the niches of the two supermarkets from the proposed positioning statements.

Market Offerings

The two selected companies have similarities and differences in their marketing offerings. A similarity is that they have both focused on marketing offerings that push their competitive edge. On the other hand, a key difference is a type of offering each of the supermarkets provide. For Woolworths, the core customer value is in the quality of their products. The actual products that are fronted in regards to the company’s marketing strategy are fresh vegetables, although the supermarket offers other retail products. Apart from this, the company also has augmented products which are enhanced versions of the flagship ones. For instance, instead of selling only tomatoes, the company adds other products to create a vegan package for the target population. In turn, such packages increase the company’s value proposition for the market segment targeted. It can be argued that this is one of the reasons why the company’s selected niche prefers to shop at this specific store.

Critically, the core customer value for Coles is the affordability of its flagship and augmented products. It is arguable that this lower pricing is a critical value addition for families that earn little to no income. The market offering, therefore, creates value for the specific group that the company targets amidst the larger population. Additionally, the company has tied its value proposition to the affordable nature of its flagship and augmented products. Whereas its competitor Woolworths has focused on augmented products that complement each other and raise the price, Coles is keen on augmented products that complement each other but encourage savings. This is another key difference between the two companies.


One can argue that a key similarity between the pricing strategies used by Woolworths and Coles is the fact that they are both tailored to their target niche needs. However, due to the fact that the two companies are focusing on distinct groups of people, their pricing strategies differ significantly. It can be argued that Woolworths uses a value-based pricing approach, which affects both its price floor and ceiling. Schlegelmilch (2016) defines the approach as determining prices based on what the target market believes is the worth of the full consumer experience. There are two main aspects that have to be noted. The first is that the company uses the customer’s perceived value of its brand to set its pricing. It can be debated that the consumer views Woolworths (brand) as highly prestigious, therefore, easily agree to pay more for shopping at that particular store. Secondly, the fact that consumer experience is also included in the strategy affects the prices charged.

Notably, Coles has adopted a cost-plus pricing approach. Schlegelmilch (2016) explains that the approach allows a company to calculate the fees of a product or service and adding a mark-up. Simply, Coles calculates up all the fees for getting a particular product to its stores, then adds a profit on that amount. This approach has allowed them to be significantly lower than Woolworths but ideally not the lowest retailer in the market. It is prudent to note, therefore, that the price charged in Coles is affected significantly by a change in the original/flagship price compared to Woolworths. For example, if the retailer buys a product at US 3 from the farmer, and the price changes to US 4, then the overall amount the end-user (consumer) has to pay will increase.

Promotional Mix

There are five elements of the promotional mix that have to be considered. The first one is advertising, which as Stimpson and Smith (2015) note, includes both traditional and digital approaches. A similarity between the two companies is that both have focused on digital advertising more compared to traditional. They each have online stores including their social media accounts, where clients can reach them easily. The second element is personal selling which involves interacting with clients directly (face to face). Coles has perfected the act of personal selling compared to Woolworths. This explains why Coles has more staff in their physical store, as stated earlier. It can be argued that the difference between the two communicates to their target audience. For instance, the lack of many face-to-face conversations speaks to the convenience of Woolworths’ consumers who would prefer little human interaction.

The third element of the promotional mix is sales promotion. Interestingly, in an attempt to also capture Coles’ target population, Woolworth schedules frequent sale promotions such as half-price events. These events usually target a different clientele for the company. Due to the fact that the store is perceived to be prestigious, people who do not shop at Woolworths often respond well to these sales promotions. Similarly, Coles schedules sales promotions but on a weekly level. This ensures consumer loyalty as each week the store offers different discounts. To this end, the company still communicates value to its clients.

Further, the concept of public relations is critical for both companies. The two use their digital platforms to ensure proper public perceptions. They communicate different events, sales promotions, and similar activities through these platforms. Lastly, the fifth element, direct marketing, focuses on using middle players to reach the clients (Chaffey and Smith, 2017). One way Woolworths is using direct marketing to speak to its client is through endorsements by both celebrities and “people next door.” This is similar to Coles’ strategy on the same element.

There are various ways both Coles and Woolworths use their strategic marketing choices and tactics to engage their potential and actual customers. First, Woolworths utilizes its approaches to communicate quality and class. The company uses this theme of communication even in the sales that they support. As explained, sales promotions usually target people who do not shop in Woolworths. The fact that the brand is perceived as luxurious (in regards to supermarkets) ensures that a significant number of the “untargeted” population explores such events.

On the other hand, whereas Coles also communicates to its clients, the message sent is different from Woolworths. For Coles, the theme of such messages includes how its clientele can save more. As explained, the company offers weekly promotions on its different products. This ensures that its customers are constantly engaged with the brand to know which products are on offer each week. This can be perceived as a significantly successful way of ensuring consumer loyalty as well. Critically, whereas the two companies communicate value addition to their clients, they are doing so differently. The two supermarkets still stick to their brand promise where Woolworth communicates quality while Coles focuses on affordability and saving.

Place or Distribution

There are two things that have to be discussed in terms of place and distribution. The first is the physical stores for both supermarkets. It can be argued that Coles and Woolworths have many physical stores that are specifically located in areas where their target audiences can reach easily. Both have focused on cities such as Melbourne and Victoria, where most of their clientele is located. One similarity between the two stores, in regards to their physical shops, is that they have invested heavily in their brick and mortar. Still, on the physical stores, it is also important to state that Coles has shops that are considered lower in terms of rental value. This is in an attempt to minimize operating costs to ensure that their products are also priced correctly. On the other hand, Woolworth’s rental value is perceived to be high. This speaks directly to their consumers as their products are also priced more expensively.

The second element of place and distribution is the online stores/platforms that both firms use. One similarity between the two is that they have given their digital stores needed attention due to the growing digital economy. Despite this, one can argue that Coles has better consumer engagement than Woolworths due to the fact that they have invested in more staff. Again, this communicates two different things to the consumer. Whereas Coles’ main objective is to please the client, for Woolworth, the company comes first. Therefore, the latter relies on its reputation and prestige to attract shoppers while the former relies on client management.

Reference List

Baker, J.M. and Hart, S. (eds.) (2016) The marketing book. 7th edn. New York, NY: Routledge.

Chaffey, D. and Smith, P.R. (2017) Digital marketing excellence: planning, optimizing and integrating online marketing. 5th edn. New York, NY: Taylor & Francis.

Pride, M.W. and Ferrell, C.O. (2015) Marketing 2016. 18th edn. Los Angeles: Cengage

Ray, S. and Yin, S. (2019) Channel strategies and marketing mix in a connected world. New York, NY: Springer.

Schlegelmilch, B.B. (2016) Global marketing strategy: an executive digest. New York, NY: Springer.

Stimpson, P. and Smith, A. (2015) Business management for the IB diploma. 2nd edn. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

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