state Tennessee city Nashville, state Tennessee death patient Health state Tennessee city Nashville, state Tennessee

Ex-nurse RaDonda Vaught sentenced to probation in patient medication death

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FILE - Close-up of a stethoscope in a medical setting. (Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images)NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A former Tennessee nurse whose medication error killed a patient was sentenced to three years of probation Friday as hundreds of health care workers rallied outside the courthouse, warning that criminalizing such mistakes will lead to more deaths in hospitals.A state judge imposed the sentence on RaDonda Vaught after she apologized to relatives of the victim, Charlene Murphey, and said she’ll be forever haunted by her mistake.

Vaught was found guilty in March of criminally negligent homicide and gross neglect of an impaired adult after she accidentally administered the wrong medication.Nashville Criminal Court Judge Jennifer Smith said Vaught would receive judicial diversion, a way for first-time offenders to have their charges dropped and their records expunged after successfully completing probation.

Prosecutors had argued against diversion, although they were not opposed to probation.The crowd of nurses outside protesting cheered, cried and hugged after hearing the sentence.

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