Code of Ethics
A code of ethics is a set of standards for professional behavior. Ethical codes are guidelines that are designed to set out acceptable behaviors for members of a particular group, association, or profession (Code of Ethics, n.d.). Many organizations govern themselves with a code of ethics, especially when they handle sensitive issues such as healthcare. Ultimately, a code of ethics serves as the written word declaring how professionals think of themselves, individually and collectively, and the serious responsibilities they have embraced (Code of Ethics, n.d.). The goals, basic ethical principles, grievance procedures, and feasibility of the Nursing Code of Ethics will be further discussed throughout this paper. The Nursing Code of Ethics is one such structure that displays nursing’s scope and responsibilities as a profession (Hook, 2001). The main goal of the code is to outline the distinct duties and rights for nurses. The code discusses the role of nurses as they relate to people, their practice, society, their coworkers, and their profession (Fremgen, 2009). It additionally outlines the nurses’ obligation to protect patients’ privacy, respect patients’ dignity, maintain competence in nursing, and assume responsibility and accountability for individual nursing judgments (American Nurses Association, 2001). The Code of Ethics is continuously evolving and reflects nurses’ expanded professional roles including administrators, care coordinators, educators, and researchers in addition to direct patient care providers (Hook, 2001). As a result of the expanded responsibilities of nurses, the relationship between nurses and patients has been challenged more than ever. Nurses are being faced with ethical issues and stresses more frequently. The Nursing Code of Ethics is in place to help nurses handle these challenges and remain attentive to provide patient and family centered care (Scanlon, 2000).
Ethics is an integral part of...
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