Medical errors are a substantial problem in health care. Understanding the effect of medical errors on health care providers as the “second victims” is necessary to maintain safe, quality patient care for the good of both patients and providers. We report an integrative literature review of the effect of medical errors on nurses. A model derived from the findings illustrates the concept of nurses' experience of medical errors. Specific recommendations for improving that experience are offered.
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Department of Nursing, Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg, Virginia (Dr Lewis); School of Nursing and Department of Public Health Sciences, University of Virginia, Charlottesville (Dr Baernholdt); and School of Nursing, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond (Dr Hamric).
Correspondence: Erica J. Lewis, PhD, RN, Eastern Mennonite University, 1200 Park Rd, Harrisonburg, VA 22802 (Erica.Lewis@emu.edu).
The authors declare no conflict of interest.
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Accepted for publication: November 14, 2012
Published online before print: December 7, 2012