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What is my next logically sound course of action? First, the clinical duty of Stephanie calling in a prescription not approved by me, the nurse practitioner, not only put me at risk for legal and/or disciplinary actions against my license, but she also failed to recognize the potential dangers to the patient’s overall safety and health. The scenario and conversation between the MA and the patient can be played out in a variety of ways as to how and why the MA thought her course of action would be acceptable. Was the patient prescribed the same medication at her last appointment? Did the patient tell Stephanie what antibiotic works best for her based on her symptoms? Did Stephanie perform this duty because she felt comfortable and proficient at her job due to her years of employment? I am sure Stephanie did not do this act maliciously. As stated by DeNisco and Barker (2015), sometimes good people make bad decisions when faced with certain circumstances.
The next appropriate course of action would be to have a private conversation with Stephanie examiningand questioning the current dilemma in a calm and professional manner. I would want to get Stephanie’s version of the story with hopes of her telling me the truth prior to taking any further action. During our conversation, I would want to remind her of her duties and responsibilities as defined by the governing state law and the policies enforced by the practice. It would also be pertinent to reiterate on the legality and appropriateness of prescribing medications, which Stephanie should be aware of. I would also want to review the practice’s policy and procedure on the MA’s duty and responsibility of prescription refills. The next course of action would be to notify my supervisor, whether it be the physician or office manager, of the current workplace dilemma. I feel an occurrence of this magnitude cannot be ignored because of the potential legal and safety ramifications it could impose on the party’s involved if this situation ever reoccurred. Buppert (2015) explains an approach for nurse practitioners to consider when faced with an ethical dilemma: gather information (legal or ethical in nature, consider scope of practice, patient privacy and confidentiality, who is benefiting or who is hurt), structure a plan (identify course of action, alternate approaches, and pros and cons of preferred course of action), present the issue to the appropriate person or persons, and lastly, make a decision.ReferencesAmerican Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). (2018). What is a medical assistant? Retrieved from (Links to an external site.)Buppert, C. (2015). Nurse practitioner’s business practice & legal guide (5th ed.). Retrieved from