From the desk of Adrianne Avillion, DEd, RN

Staff Development Weekly: Insight on Evidence-Based Practice in Education, August 20, 2010

Editor's note: This feature is written by nursing staff development expert Adrianne Avillion. Each week, Adrianne writes about an important issue in the area of staff development or answers reader questions. If you have a question for Adrianne, e-mail her at

Q. As a nursing staff educator, am I legally responsible if a nurse fails to apply knowledge acquired from one of my education programs?

A. You are responsible for the accuracy of content presented and the assessment of knowledge/skills acquisition. If you present inaccurate content, you may be held responsible (or partially responsible) if a nurse provides care based on inaccuracies and a patient is harmed.

If you fail to report that a nurse did not achieve competency or fails an examination and harms a patient as a result of such failure, you may be held accountable. For specific legal advice, consult with your organization's legal department.

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