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Nurses have four fundamental responsibilities: to promote health

Info: 2079 words (8 pages) Nursing Essay
Published: 11th Feb 2020

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Nurses have four fundamental responsibilities: to promote health, to prevent illness, to restore health and to alleviate suffering. The need for nursing is universal. Inherent in nursing is respect for human rights, including cultural

rights, the right to life and choice, to dignity and to be treated with respect. Nursing care is respectful of and unrestricted by considerations of age, colour, creed, culture, disability or illness, gender,

sexual orientation, nationality, politics, race or social status. Nurses render health services to the individual, the family and the community and co-ordinate their services with those of related groups.

ELEMENTS OF THE CODE

1. NURSES AND PEOPLE

The nurse’s primary professional responsibility is to people requiring

nursing care.

In providing care, the nurse promotes an environment in which the

human rights, values, customs and spiritual beliefs of the individual,

family and community are respected.

The nurse ensures that the individual receives sufficient information

on which to base consent for care and related treatment.

The nurse holds in confidence personal information and uses judgement

in sharing this information.

The nurse shares with society the responsibility for initiating and supporting

action to meet the health and social needs of the public, in

particular those of vulnerable populations.

The nurse also shares responsibility to sustain and protect the natural

environment from depletion, pollution, degradation and

destruction.

2. NURSES AND PRACTICE

The nurse carries personal responsibility and accountability for

nursing practice, and for maintaining competence by continual

learning.

2

The nurse maintains a standard of personal health such that the

ability to provide care is not compromised.

The nurse maintains a standard of personal health such that the

ability to provide care is not compromised.

The nurse at all times maintains standards of personal conduct

which reflect well on the profession and enhance public confidence.

The nurse, in providing care, ensures that use of technology and

scientific advances are compatible with the safety, dignity and

rights of people.

3. NURSES AND THE PROFESSION

The nurse assumes the major role in determining and implementing

acceptable standards of clinical nursing practice, management,

research and education.

The nurse is active in developing a core of research-based professional

knowledge.

The nurse, acting through the professional organisation, participates

in creating and maintaining safe, equitable social and economic

working conditions in nursing.

4. NURSES AND CO-WORKERS

The nurse sustains a co-operative relationship with co-workers in

nursing and other fields.

The nurse takes appropriate action to safeguard individuals, families

and communities when their health is endangered by a coworker

or any other person.

3

SUGGESTIONS FOR USE OF THE ICN CODE OF ETHICS FOR NURSES

SUGGESTIONS FOR USE OF THE ICN CODE OF ETHICS FOR NURSES

ument

if applied to the realities of nursing and health care in a

changing society.

To achieve its purpose the Code must be understood, internalised

and used by nurses in all aspects of their work. It must be available

to students and nurses throughout their study and work lives.

APPLYING THE ELEMENTS OF THE ICN CODE OF ETHICS FOR NURSES

The four elements of the ICN Code of Ethics for Nurses : nurses and

people, nurses and practice, nurses and the profession, and nurses

and co-workers, give a framework for the standards of conduct. The

following chart will assist nurses to translate the standards into

action. Nurses and nursing students can therefore:

‘ Study the standards under each element of the Code.

‘ Reflect on what each standard means to you. Think about how you

can apply ethics in your nursing domain: practice, education,

research or management.

‘ Discuss the Code with co-workers and others.

‘ Use a specific example from experience to identify ethical dilemmas

and standards of conduct as outlined in the Code. Identify

how you would resolve the dilemmas.

‘ Work in groups to clarify ethical decision making and reach a

consensus on standards of ethical conduct.

‘ Collaborate with your national nurses’ association, co-workers,

and others in the continuous application of ethical standards in

nursing practice, education, management and research.

4

Element of the Code # 1: NURSES AND PEOPLE Element of the Code # 1: NURSES AND PEOPLE

Educators and

Researchers

National Nurses’

Associations

Provide care that In curriculum include Develop position

respects human references to human statements and

rights and is sensirights,

equity, justice, guidelines that

tive to the values, solidarity as the basis support human

customs and beliefs for access to care. rights and ethical

of all people. standards.

Provide continuing

education in ethical

issues.

Provide teaching and

learning opportunities

for ethical issues and

decision making.

Lobby for involvement

of nurses in

ethics review

committees.

Provide sufficient Provide Provide guidelines,

information to teaching/learning position statements

permit informed opportunities and continuing

consent and the related to informed education related to

right to choose or consent. informed consent.

refuse treatment.

Use recording and Introduce into Incorporate issues

information curriculum concepts of confidentiality

management of privacy and confiand

privacy into

systems that ensure dentiality. a national code of

confidentiality. ethics for nurses.

Develop and Sensitise students to Advocate for safe

monitor environthe

importance of and healthy

mental safety in the social action in environment.

workplace. current concerns.

5

Element of the Code # 2 : NURSES AND PRACTICE Element of the Code # 2 : NURSES AND PRACTICE

Educators and

Researchers

National Nurses’

Associations

Establish standards Provide Provide access

of care and a teaching/learning to continuing

work setting that opportunities that education, through

promotes safety foster life long journals, confer-

and quality care. learning and

competence for

practice.

ences, distance

education, etc.

Establish systems

for professional

appraisal, continuing

education and

systematic renewal

of licensure to

practice.

Conduct and disseminate

research

that shows links

between continual

learning and

competence to

practice.

Lobby to ensure

continuing education

opportunities

and quality care

standards.

Monitor and

promote the

personal health of

nursing staff in

relation to their

competence for

practice.

Promote the

importance of personal

health and

illustrate its relation

to other values.

Promote healthy

lifestyles for

nursing professionals.

Lobby

for healthy work

places and

services for nurses.

6

Element of the Code # 3: NURSES AND THE PROFESSION Element of the Code # 3: NURSES AND THE PROFESSION

Educators and

Researchers

National Nurses’

Associations

Set standards for Provide Collaborate with

nursing practice, teaching/learning others to set

research, opportunities in standards for

education and setting standards nursing education,

management. for nursing

practice, research,

education and

management.

practice, research

and management.

Foster workplace

support of the

conduct,

dissemination and

utilisation of

research related

to nursing and

health.

Conduct, disseminate

and utilise

research to

advance the

nursing profession.

Develop position

statements,

guidelines and

standards related

to nursing

research.

Promote participation

in national

nurses’ associations

so as to

create favourable

socio-economic

conditions for

nurses.

Sensitise learners

to the importance

of professional

nursing associations.

Lobby for fair

social and

economic working

conditions in

nursing. Develop

position statements

and guidelines in

workplace issues.

7

Element of the Code #4 : NURSES AND CO-WORKERS Element of the Code #4 : NURSES AND CO-WORKERS

Educators and

Researchers

National Nurses’

Associations

Create awareness

of specific and

overlapping

functions and the

potential for

interdisciplinary

tensions.

Develop understanding

of the

roles of other

workers.

Stimulate

co-operation with

other related

disciplines.

Develop workplace

systems that

support common

professional

ethical values and

behaviour.

Communicate

nursing ethics to

other professions.

Develop awareness

of ethical issues of

other professions.

Develop

mechanisms to

safeguard the

individual, family

or community

when their care is

endangered by

health care

personnel.

Instil in learners

the need to

safeguard the

individual, family

or community when

care is endangered

by health care

personnel.

Provide guidelines,

position statements

and discussion

fora related to

safeguarding

people when their

care is endangered

by health care

personnel.

8

DISSEMINATION OF THE ICN CODE OF ETHICS FOR NURSES

DISSEMINATION OF THE ICN CODE OF ETHICS FOR NURSES

ing

groups, human rights organisations and employers of nurses.

GLOSSARY OF TERMS USED IN THE ICN CODE OF ETHICS FOR NURSES

Co-worker

Other nurses and other health and non-health

related workers and professionals.

Co-operative A professional relationship based on collegial

relationship and reciprocal actions, and behaviour that

aim to achieve certain goals.

Family

A social unit composed of members connected

through blood, kinship, emotional or legal

relationships.

Nurse shares A nurse, as a health professional and a citizen,

with society initiates and supports appropriate action to

meet the health and social needs of the public.

Personal health

Mental, physical, social and spiritual wellbeing

of the nurse.

Personal

Information obtained during professional

information

contact that is private to an individual or family,

and which, when disclosed, may violate the

right to privacy, cause inconvenience, embarrassment,

or harm to the individual or family.

Related groups

Other nurses, health care workers or other professionals

providing service to an individual,

family or community and working toward

desired goals.

9

International Council of Nurses

3, place Jean-Marteau

1201 Geneva, Switzerland

Tel. +41 (22) 908 01 00

Fax +41 (22) 908 01 01

email: icn@icn.ch

Web site: www.icn.ch

 

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