Torts: False Imprisonment & Abuse

Tort is a wrongful act. The two types of torts are false imprisonment and abuse

False Imprisonment:the unlawful restraint of a person from exercising the right to freedom of movement. Patients have the right to leave a hospital or health care facility without a physician's permission . A patient usually is asked to sign a AMA (Against Medical Advice) form. If they refused to sign, this must be documented in the patients file and physician must be notified.

Examples: keeping patients against their will or applying psychical restraints

Abuse: Putting someone in harms way

Five types of abuse:

  • Physical: hitting Ex. fighting or punching someone
  • Verbal: with your words Ex. threats, shouting
  • Sexual: touching inappropriately Ex. Sex
  • Psychological: ridiculing Ex. revealing someone else secrets that  they don't want people to know
  • Domestic: when your partner uses threatening and aggressive behavior to maintain their power in that relationship

Signs of abuse:

  • unexplained bruises
  • signs of neglect such as poor personal hygiene
  • irrational fears or change in personality
  • aggressive behavior
  • patient statements

Healthcare workers are required to report any signs or symptoms of abuse to their immediate supervisor  

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