Hospitals and clinics have an atmosphere of diversity, high energy, and stress. This combination makes the subject of compliance run on a good-faith method for an employee. Attitudes and characteristics about compliance mix, and unless someone catches a non-compliance decision, noticing potential issues could come too late.


For example, a young overwhelmed ER nurse needs to perform a task for a provider. A visitor stops her to say she demands a diagnosis for her friend’s leg swelling. They’d been waiting long enough, and the doctor has already seen the patient, so surely there’s no harm. The visitor is insistent, but the doctor has already yelled at her once to hurry up, so she blurts a general technical term ‘thinking’ it’s cellulitis and runs to perform her task.


  • This visitor wasn’t the patient, and the RN didn’t know if the patient authorized her to have any chart information, which breaks HIPAA compliance.
  • The cellulitis wasn’t a firm diagnosis by the physician. However, if the leg was swelling was due to a deep vein thrombosis, the circumstances could be catastrophic. This situation created an ethical compliance issue that is potentially dangerous in many ways.


How to overcome generational behaviors?

“I did the best I could at the time.”

Each generation of workers learned their attitudes and behaviors in diverse ways. The statement above could be one of the first responses. Scenarios like our young nurse had, can occur very quickly, but an RN fully educated in the compliance laws for her job in the company knows how to handle these situations according to what’s expected of her and would have less difficulty to comply.

Teaching the staff to stand firm in the face of any adversity or conflict opposing set compliance protocols, and regulations, protect not only the patient, but also the caregiver, and the organization.

“Rules are made to be broken.”

Be thorough in explaining what the consequences are for being non-compliant. The repercussions of the possible death of a patient due to thinking there’s “no harm” may turn to catastrophe. It can lead to the removal of an RN’s license or a bad media position for the company.

“I had to make an immediate decision.”

Tell staff that if there is an ‘immediate’ decision to be made, document every detail possible to protect themselves once the situation allows. What led up to this judgment? What was said? How was this situation ‘immediate?’ What happened after the decision was performed?

Documentation will protect the employee. If the decision is deemed the wrong one, then the documentation can help understand what thinking processes could be corrected for a similar situation that happens.


Interactive Services thoroughly help prepare employees of any generation. Protect your patients, employees, and your company. Call Interactive Services today for more information.