Nursing Ethics

Topics: Ethics, Nursing, Medical ethics Pages: 3 (867 words) Published: April 10, 2014
Ethics is part of the framework in the practice of every profession. The term ‘ethics’ has several meanings associated to it. It may refer to a method of inquiry that helps people understand the morality of human behavior, beliefs and practices of a group or the expected standard of moral behavior of a specific group as described by their code of professional ethics (Berman 83). With nursing being a reputable profession, it is but expected that it has its own set of ethical standards thus called as nursing ethics. Nursing ethics refers to ethical issues that occur in nursing practice (Berman 83). Nurses need to have a code of ethics because they make decision as part of their daily tasks and responsibilities. These decisions invariably affect their patients, their families and friends, the organization which the nurse works for.  In the process of doing these delicate tasks and performing these duties and responsibilities, nurses have encountered ethical issue and dilemmas. As such, it is necessary for them to have a set of code which serves as their guidelines on how to act and behave.  They need to have practical guide on how to ethically and morally act in relation to certain circumstances. In the past, the duty to make the decision relative to patient care rested solely on the physician. The physician was responsible for the outcome of the decision made and nurses just had to stand by the decision of the physician. However, with the increasing development in technology and the complexity of health situations, the role of nurses in patient care has slowly evolved and expanded.  Greater responsibility has been delegated upon them to make timely decisions relative to the care of their patient.  With the invention of mechanical ventilators, lives of the terminally ill could be prolonged and with it entered the issue of euthanasia or mercy killing. Realizing that no one profession or discipline has all the knowledge and expertise when it comes to ethics,...
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