Law for Nurses and Midwives


  • Patricia Staunton, RN, CM, LLB, MCrim; Barrister-at-Law of the Inner Temple, London, Judicial Member and Deputy President of the Industrial Relations Commission of NSW, Sydney, NSW, Australia
  • Mary Chiarella, RN, RM, LLB (Hons), PhD (UNSW), Professor, Clinical Practice Development and Policy Research, University of Technology, Sydney, NSW, Australia

An easy-to-follow introduction to the legal issues affecting health care providers in Australia.

Law for Nurses and Midwives, 7th edition gives undergraduate and postgraduate nursing and midwifery students a concise introduction to the law as it pertains health care provision in Australia.

As students will already appreciate, nursing and midwifery practice involves making decisions with and for others. This often requires evaluation of best interests and obligations and an assessment of what will best protect or enhance a patient or client’s wellbeing. Understanding the application of current legal statutes - particularly those relating to negligence and consent - as they apply to professional practice is therefore essential for all nurses and midwives.

Law for Nurses and Midwives, 7th edition provides students with information and knowledge necessary to make well informed and considered decisions - both for themselves and for those under their care.

The six previous editions of this text were published as Nursing & the Law, and this seventh edition builds upon their established high regard.  With its new title, Law for Nurses and Midwives reflects recent regulations changes under Australian National Registration, implemented in July 2010.

All Australian state and territory statutes have been revised and Chapter 8: Professional regulation of nursing practice has been completely rewritten. There is now a specific section included on Maternity Services law to address the new standards and guidelines for eligible midwives.

Students will benefit from actual legal cases within the book, which provide examples of the law in context, while extensive endnotes offer detailed referencing. Tables and boxed information highlight the most up-to-date data, research and statutes for ease of reference.
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Undergraduate nursing students


Book information

  • Published: October 2012
  • ISBN: 978-0-7295-8102-8

Table of Contents

1 REVISED & UPDATED Introduction to the Law

2 REVISED & UPDATED The relationship between law and ethics

3 REVISED & UPDATED Professional Negligence and vicarious liability

4 REVISED & UPDATED Consent to treatment

5 REVISED & UPDATED The contract of employment, including occupational health and safety and workers compensation

6 REVISED & UPDATED The administration of drugs

7 REVISED & UPDATED Report writing: confidentiality of and access to patient records

8 COMPLETE REWRITE Professional regulation of nurses and midwives  (includes a specific section on Maternity services law)

9 REVISED & UPDATEDCoronial jurisdiction

10 REVISED & UPDATEDHuman tissue transplantation

11 REVISED & UPDATEDMental Health