The code of Ethics for nurses was developed so that it could act as guide for carrying respective nurse responsibilities in a way that is consistent with the assigned quality in nursing care and the different ethical obligations expected of the nursing profession (Bandman & Badman, 2002). Nurses are expected to be capable to practise competence and integrity in their profession. Moreover, the professional nursing is expected to offer promotion and optimization of health and abilities, ensure prevention of illnesses and injury and ensure they alleviate the sufferings through proper diagnosis and treatment of the patients (Chadwick & Gallagher, 2016). Therefore, it is paramount for the nurses to have an effective ethical code to enable them have the capability to manage the ethical problems that are realized at the society level, organization level and clinical level.
Nurses are expected to be truthfully and provide all the needed information to their patients. However, often nurses are faced with ethical dilemma on whether to withhold certain information so that the patient is protected from any form of distress (Fry, 2008). Honest verses information in the medicine world can at times prove to be a challenge. Justification for the patients family can be made where the family and friends may decide to withhold information because they are embarrassed or ashamed or may be willing to withhold information so that the patient is not emotionally distressed. However, when it comes to the nurses, both the patient and the family require to get all information. Therefore, deciding on the kind of information to share, how to share, when to share and who to share with can be a very difficult for the nurses in charge. Nurses who have been charge for withholding information have defended their stand by noting, they do so especially to the patients who are in their final stages to avoid further stressing them and giving them hope in their final days. However, the families who later discover information was withheld by the nurses often note the nurses have no right not to be completely honest with both the patients and the primary care givers.
The ethical principle of nursing examination in the study is dignity. The nurses are expected to recognize and also respect the patients plus their families and friends and ensure there is respectful treatment (Benner, Tanner &Chesla, 2009). Therefore, the dignity principle mandates the nurses to demonstrate respect and preserve the rights of the patients. In relation to the ethical issue on information and honesty, the patients have a right to have all the information but there are instances where the nurses judge and decide not to give the full information to the patients to preserve their happiness. Secondly, the dignity principles expects the nurses to be sensitive to the patients needs, values and also different choices (Benner, Tanner &Chesla, 2009). Thus the nurses are expected to take keen interest on the cultural, physical, social and biological needs of the patients in health care. However, based on the ethical issue discussed. There are instances where the nurses choose not to be completely honest with the family members to avoid issues of abandonment. Often families have been recorded to abandon their sick relatives upon learning they may never recover. Therefore, often nurses assess the support of the patients from friends and families and gauge if they can give all the information. Third, the nurses are expected to recognize the vulnerability of the patients and ensure they do not exploit the identified vulnerabilities for the nurses own interests (Benner, Tanner &Chesla, 2009). Example, the nurses are expected to avoid sexual intimacy with the patients and avoid exploitation of trust. The nurses are the patients confidants and in many instances they trust the nurses information shared. Therefore, in cases where the information is share halfway. Then the nurses can be classified to be exploiting the vulnerability of the patients.
Nursing is a critical factor in determining the level of quality of care in the hospitals. Therefore, first significance of ethics to nursing patient-care, by nurses ensuring they maintain ethics they are able to maintain a high level of professional competence through professional development as they promote heath, alleviate suffering of the patients an prevent different diseases (Chadwick & Gallagher, 2016). Second, the nurses are expected to practice high integrity and report any kind of immoral behavior by other professionals. Through top notch morality, the nurses are capable to ensure competence at their work stations. Third, the nurses are capable to balance job performance with the nursing ethics (Chadwick & Gallagher, 2016). By balancing job performance with the ethics the nurses are capable to provide wholesome services to the patients with ease.
In summary, the nurses are integral to the community. They are key to ensuring the people are capable to get the needed care. However, to ensure the nurses are capable to provide the best services, they are guarded by the ethical principles. The principles in detail allows the nurses to clearly identify their roles and responsibilities to the patients. In detail the paper has examine a key ethical dilemma for the nurses where they have to decide whether to be honest and give all information to the patients, or withhold some information from the patients so that they do not depress them with especially if they are almost at their point of death.
Bandman,E. L., & Badman, B. (2002). Nursing ethics through the life span
Benner, P. E., Tanner, C.A., &Chesla, C. A. (2009).Expertise in nursing practice: Caring, clinical judgement, and ethics. Springer Publishing company
Chadwick, R., & Gallagher, A. (2016). Ethics and nursing practice. Palgrave Macmillan.
Fry, S.T (2008). Ethics in nursig pactice: a guide to ethical decision making
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