Nursing Ethics

Liane Clores, RN

A lot of things must be taken into consideration when it comes to patient care, all of which a nurse must be aware of. The quality of care provided by nurses and other members of the health care team pose a direct impact on the part of the patients especially their health.

Ethics is essential in nursing because with it comes success and safety in the field. Since nurses are dealing with lives, it is very important for us to follow ethics strictly.

Why it is important:

  • It helps be ready in facing certain circumstances.

Ethics gives us a ready understanding of how to react to a certain situations way before that situation takes place.

  • It provides us with the rules and principles to ethical decision making.

It serves as a basis for weighing options and comprehending the notion of what is right and what is wrong. It offers nurses a frame of reference for making decisions and what action is appropriate to be done in a multifaceted situation.

  • Nursing ethics provides a pedestal for adjusting the relationship between nurse, patient, coworkers, society and profession.

They act as our moderator when it comes to dealing or interacting with other people especially in special cases such as dilemmas, abortion, and Euthanasia.

  • It equips us with standards of practice and profession.

Ethics in nursing encourages the sense of essential responsibilities of nursing care as to promote health, prevent the occurrence of diseases, to restore health, and to alleviate suffering.

  • It encourages the development of caring attitude, sense of responsibility and accountability among nurses.

Nursing ethics suggests that nurses are different than other professions as they focus more on caring and nurturing the patient as a whole rather than focusing on the illness itself. This also means that nurses should focus more on daily ethical practice since we often make snap difficult decisions. However difficult the situation may be where there are not always speedy and correct answers, nurses must still know how to explain and take account on those decisions made.

  • It promotes an environment in which the values, customs and religious beliefs are respected.

Ethics encourages nurses to respect the values and beliefs of patients and enable them to make their own choices about their treatment. We must also consider that patients are also rational beings that are autonomous and have their own opinions. By having respect to a patient’s dignity, we also show how we respect the person itself and their own choices.

Nursing itself an ethical activity with the aim of doing good deeds to patients, however, it is best to diminish and avoid inflicting damage as we try to attain those intentions no matter how hard it may be. A good nursing practice requires a well-reasoned assessment of what nurses execute in the field in addition to a positive understanding of how and why they do it.  By considering ethics, we are able to evaluate and weigh nursing decisions and actions significantly.

Source: http://www.kmu.edu.pk/pgcn/sites/kmu.edu.pk.pgcn/files/Lectures/Introduction%20to%20Nursing%20Ethics%20Lec%201.pdf

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