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Articles by Sally Austin, ADN, BGS, CPC-A, JD

What does EMTALA mean for you?

Austin, Sally

Nursing2011. 41(6):55-59, June 2011.

Do you know what the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act requires of you and your facility? Read this review to make sure your ED patient is properly screened, prioritized, and monitored according to the so-called "anti-dumping" law.

Stay out of court with proper documentation

Austin, Sally

Nursing2011. 41(4):24-29, April 2011.

Besides undermining patient safety, inaccurate or incomplete documentation can land you in court if you're ever charged with nursing negligence. Avoid legal problems by always following these practical, best-practice guidelines.

Seven legal tips for safe nursing practice

Austin, Sally

Nursing2008. 38(3):34-39, March 2008.

Keep your patients safe and protect yourself from legal problems by focusing on seven key areas of nursing liability.

Walk a fine line if your patient wants to leave AMA


Nursing2006. 36(12):48-49, December 2006.

Listen to this attorney's advice to protect your patient from harm—and yourself from legal fallout.

“Ladies & gentlemen of the jury, I present ... the nursing documentation”


Nursing2006. 36(1):56-63, January 2006.

Good charting is good nursing—and it can also protect you if you ever wind up in court. Take this nurse-attorney's advice to avoid potentially costly documentation pitfalls.

Hold the phone: Are you liable for telephone advice?


Nursing2005. 35(10):54-55, October 2005.

Answering even a simple question from a former patient could land you in hot water. Before you pick up the phone, take this lawyer's advice.