Premium Essay

Ethical & Legal Aspects of Nursing

In: Other Topics

Submitted By swartz
Words 1371
Pages 6
Ethical and Legal Aspects of Nursing
NUR 391
September 19, 2011 Ethical and Legal Aspects of Nursing Nursing is an ever-changing profession that responds to diverse and complex issues of health maintenance, protection of patient safety, human rights, and dignity. Professional nurses are in a unique position as patient advocates, regardless of practice setting. Nurse’s face inherent ethical decisions making, and they are frequently involved in the ethical decisions both personally and professionally when ethical reason both for and against the choice are both equally desirable (Pierce, 1997). The ANA Code of Ethics with Interpretive Statements offers a statement for every professional nurse’s ethical obligations and duties, ethical standard, and commitment to society (ANA, 2001).
Nurse must continuously meet standards of care and the ANA Code of Ethics and uphold fundamental legalities. Taking a closer look into the nurses ethical responsibility and fundamental legalities associated with direct patient care and as it would apply in the case study case study of patient Marianne, a 79 year-old female, who is admitted to the emergency department with hemorrhagic stroke, a grave prognosis of recovery and no advance directive. This paper will discuss legal responsibilities of the registered nurse as witness in a malpractice case of a nurse colleague found negligent in following standards of nursing practice. “The nurse’s primary commitment is to the patient who is the recipient of nursing care,” (Rushton, Dixon, & Wavra, 2005, p. 6). This quote applies to both nursing dilemmas discussed. The primary obligation of the nurse is to protect the patient’s best interest, maintaining safety, dignity and ethical accountability, which is essential in Marianne’s case, as she is neurologically unstable and unable to self direct care and is without a living will.…...

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing

...Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing NUR/391 Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing As nurses, it is our duty to advocate for our patients. At times, we are faced with personal and professional challenges that impact how and when we chose to advocate. It is imperative we have a healthy awareness of these potential challenges. Improvements in health care technology have provided patients with an array of treatment options as well as assumed or possible increased chance of survival. As a result, nurses are met with a rise in ethical decision making. This paper will discuss the legal, ethical, social, and personal factors that can impact our decision making process, with the focus on two specific case studies. American Nurses Association Code of Nursing Ethics Role in Practice The American Nursing Association (ANA) has created a set of ethical standards for the profession of nursing to abide by, which is entitled the ANA Nursing Code of Ethics. The ANA Code of Ethics states that collaboration is central to the care nurses deliver and to their ethical commitment to the patient (Garity, 2005). In the end-of-life case study, the nurse (she) has an unwritten obligation to the patient; the family appears to be in conflict with how to proceed with the patient's medical treatment. The medical team has an obligation to give the family all of their options and possible outcomes. If the family remains in conflict, it would then be appropriate for her to refer the family......

Words: 1859 - Pages: 8

Free Essay

Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing

...Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing Team C NUR/391 Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing Nurses face various ethical and legal issues in the medical setting. As professionals, nurses must be aware of these legal and ethical issues when they occur. Nurses have a legal and ethical obligation to respond to these issues. Being a professional nurse requires a nurse to assess the pros and cons of different situations, but also to withhold their personal beliefs and listen and respect the beliefs and traditions of others. Legally Nursing implications require nurses to maintain licensure, obey state and federal laws and to remain within their scope of practice. Within these legal and ethical issues the American Association Code of Nursing ethics, personal and societal values, legal aspects and legal responsibilities all affect decisions. Two different cases will be discussed and explored; an advance directive case involving a woman by the name of Marianne, and a malpractice case involving a nurse and the involved healthcare organization. The American Nurses Association Code of Nursing Ethics can influence the final decision made in the case study involving Marianne’s family by designating a surrogate. According to "American Nurses Association" (2011), “The nurse supports patients self-determination by participating in discussions with surrogates, providing guidance, referral to other resources as necessary, and identifying and addressing problems in the......

Words: 1826 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing

...ETHICAL AND LEGAL ISSUES OF Nursing Many confusing factors make it a task to establish, monitor and sustain ethical and legal issues in nursing. Everyone has various personal views based on experiences of life, religion, education and political affiliations, all nurses should be aware about nursing laws and ethics and understand how nursing legal issues can affect them. The American Nurses Association (ANA) Code of Ethics is very influential to nurses because it is used as a framework for making ethical decisions with all aspects of health care. The foundation in any successful professional practice, are based on ethics, values, morals and principles from which the ANA Code of Ethics are formatted. Moral leadership in nursing is about professionalism, responsibility, accountability, and competency. Nurses have an obligation to preserve their patient’s values, beliefs and dignity, to assure optimal health care, personal well- being, and promote quality of life. In all aspect of nursing, nurses are role models, healthcare providers, patient advocates and are required to meet the needs of their patients. Which can be done by communicating openly and honestly, being fair and trustworthy, being proactive, and by putting patients first. Nurses are face with ethical dilemmas on a daily basic therefore, must examine their own personal and professional values and morals in order to maintain a caring and compassionate relationship with their patients. When complex......

Words: 956 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Nursing : Career Development

...Introduction Nursing is a call to serve the humanity. Present day healthcare system focused on preventive care and wellness has become highly advanced which makes every nurse responsible to achieve maximum level of education, skills and power of knowledge to meet the challenges. Continuous research in nursing and the evidence obtained from the research serves to support the nursing care. Continuing education helps nurses to keep track of all the developments taking place in the field, trace advances in technology and care, have a better understanding of all current rules and regulations, beware of all ethical and legal aspects of nursing as envisaged by various boards of nursing and other authorities in the field of healthcare. In this paper, I would like to explain the position statement of career development in nursing. It is only through proper and continued education that nurses can provide patients better care, assess and report what is best for the patient and always seek ways to improve patient outcome. In order to achieve the best results, nurses need to identify the core knowledge, scientific principles, skills and attitudes of nursing practice to improve healthcare system (International Council of Nurses, 2007). Therefore career development must be achieved by integrating care through our scholastic system, giving nurses opportunity to learn, grow and move up the ladder, making them capable of leading from the forefront. Career Development in Nursing Ever......

Words: 2144 - Pages: 9

Premium Essay

Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing

...Ethical and Legal Issues Ethical and Legal Issues Faced with ethical and legal decisions on a daily basis, nurses must at times make some pretty tough decisions including how to proceed with care for an incapacitated patient with no advanced directive or how to proceed when called upon to testify against a current employer. The American Nurses Association Code of Nursing Ethics is one of the main tools available for the nurse to utilize when it comes to making these tough decisions. The nurse may apply personal values as well as societal values to these cases in order to come to a sound, ethical decision. The legal aspects of each of these cases can have a profound effect on the continuing career of the nurse, a thorough evaluation is necessary to protect all involved. Finally, the nurse also carries a legal responsibility to her profession, workplace, patients, and self. Ethical and legal decision-making are complex but after a thorough assessment, the nurse can continue to make an ethically and legally sound judgment on how to proceed. Influence of the ANA Code of Nursing Ethics The ANA Code of Nursing Ethics is the first reference when deciding how to proceed with an incapacitated patient who has no advanced directive or how a nurse should react when called upon to testify against an employer in a negligence or malpractice case. This code, designed to assist the nurse in maintaining his or her ethical integrity as well as protect the......

Words: 1176 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Ethical Issues in Nursing

...Ethical and Legal issues in Nursing The nursing profession is very complex. Every day nurses deal with patients and medical care. There are some days when ethics and legal issues play a role. We were given examples of the legal complexities of nursing through two case studies we were to evaluate. For this paper we will discuss the legal responsibilities of nursing, how personal and societal values can influence ethical decision-making and how the ANA’s Code of Nursing Ethics would influence the final decisions.                                       Legal Responsibilities of Nurses Nursing boards are governmental state agencies responsible for regulating the nursing practice.   A nursing license obtained through state nursing boards validates that nurses have met standards for providing high quality care.   Nurses are legally held accountable for administering medications accurately, educating patients and public on health issues, advocating for the patient regarding health care, and serving as a liaison between the patient and the physician.   Professional standards are determined by Standards of Practice Acts and the American Nurses Association’s Code of Ethics.   As professionals, nurses must also be familiar with ethical responsibilities and protect the rights of their patients and families.   As the definition of liability has continued to expand through the judicial system, courts of laws have placed higher standards on the profession of nursing.     Many times......

Words: 1410 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing

...Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing NUR/391 July 28, 2013 Mary Nicks, MSN, RN Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing In this paper ethical and legal issues will be reviewed concerning the decisions and responsibilities of the nurse in the case of Marianne who has had a stroke and the decisions that the family is facing for treatment or end of life care. The legal and ethical issues in a malpractice case that occurred several years ago and the responsibility of the nurse to her employer, the nurse being sued, the client in question, and the institution’s client will be reviewed. The areas that will be reviewed include how the American Nurses Association Code of Ethics would influence a final decision in each case study, how personal and societal values can influence the ethical decision making, the fundamental legal aspects of each case study, and the legal responsibility of the nurse in the work setting. The ANA code of Ethics must be followed in practice and is an especially useful tool when there are difficult legal and ethical issues that arise in nursing practice. In the example of the malpractice case for negligence, as a witness to questionable practice, it is the nurse’s primary responsibility to protect the safety of the patient. Although the nurse was correct in reporting the episode to administration, she also had a duty to counsel the nurse about the inappropriate standard of care. The ANA is clear that when a nurse is aware of questionable......

Words: 1444 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Nursing Law

...Implementing ethico-legal issues in nursing practice. Caldwell, E., Lu, H., & Harding, T. (2010). Encompassing multiple moral paradigms: a challenge for nursing educators. Nursing Ethics 17(2), 189-199. Retrieved August3, 2010, from Health Source: Nursing/Academic Edition Database. Aim: As society becomes increasingly globalised, it is imperative to include international educational perspectives in the nursing profession (Robinson, Sportsman, Eschiti, Bradshaw and Bol, (2006). Caldwell, Lu & Harding (2010) argue that the quality of nursing care necessitates nurses to reflect on nursing ethics in relation to their individual principled way of life. Cadwell, Lu & Harding (2010) paper explores these ideas. Summary: The fundamental nature of professional development implies personal development (Glen, 2005). ‘Encompassing multiple moral paradigms: a challenge for nursing educators’, is an in-depth analysis of nursing ethical dilemmas; the efforts that are undertaken to implement professional development through reflection, self-monitoring and self-control; and the challenges for nurse educators to integrate the syllabus into real-life clinical practice situations. Caldwell, Lu & Harding (2010) study analyses nursing ethics, Chinese ethical philosophies, and Judeo/Christian traditions as they endeavour to demonstrate the real-life issues of morally conflicting situations in nursing practice within these groups and the possible legal consequences. Relevant to topic......

Words: 1039 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Curriculum

...ASN Program Description Mission and Goals Our Mission Trinity College of Nursing and Health Sciences provides a quality higher learning environment preparing competent practitioners for health-care professions. Continuous quality improvement guides the educational process as students prepare to deliver culturally congruent health care, perform as responsible citizens within the global community and seek avenues for life-long learning. Our Goals Program goals for each department in the College derive from the philosophy of the College and the domain competencies, as follows: Knowledge • ability to examine and explain phenomena • ability to construct and organize knowledge • ability to integrate and synthesize knowledge • ability to apply quantitative and qualitative concepts Proficiency • ability to solve practical problems • ability to collaborate with multiple disciplines • ability to communicate effectively • ability to practice competently and skillfully in a changing health-care environment Culture Care Values • ability to preserve/maintain cultural identities • ability to accommodate/negotiate diverse life ways • ability to re-pattern/restructure health-care delivery methods • ability to apply ethical and legal principles to health care The Associate of Science in Nursing Program (ASN) is a two-year program of study combining didactic and clinical nursing courses as well as general education......

Words: 6617 - Pages: 27

Premium Essay

Ethical Issues

...Ethical and Legal Aspects of Nursing Nursing is an ever-changing profession that responds to diverse and complex issues of health maintenance, protection of patient safety, human rights, and dignity. Professional nurses are in a unique position as patient advocates, regardless of practice setting. Nurse’s face inherent ethical decisions making, and they are frequently involved in the ethical decisions both personally and professionally when ethical reason both for and against the choice are both equally desirable (Pierce, 1997). The ANA Code of Ethics with Interpretive Statements offers a statement for every professional nurse’s ethical obligations and duties, ethical standard, and commitment to society (ANA, 2001). Nurse must continuously meet standards of care and the ANA Code of Ethics and uphold fundamental legalities. Taking a closer look into the nurses ethical responsibility and fundamental legalities associated with direct patient care and as it would apply in the case study case study of patient Marianne, a 79 year-old female, who is admitted to the emergency department with hemorrhagic stroke, a grave prognosis of recovery and no advance directive. This paper will discuss legal responsibilities of the registered nurse as witness in a malpractice case of a nurse colleague found negligent in following standards of nursing practice. “The nurse’s primary commitment is to the patient who is the recipient of nursing care,” (Rushton, Dixon, & Wavra, 2005, p. 6).......

Words: 293 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Legal Aspects of Nursing

...There are many different legal aspects of nursing. The legal aspects are there to protect the patients. Nurses need to know these because it can put their license in jeopardy, fines, jail time or even worse, harm to a patient. Not only could you be in trouble because you did something, you could also be in trouble for not doing something. When working with patients that are sick or injured the last thing you need is to let something else other then there sickness or injury interfere with their healing or comfort level. By choosing to become a nurse you accept the laws and responsibilities that come along with it. As a Licensed Vocational Nurse the combination of legal principles, established laws, moral standards and ethical principles guide your practice of nursing. As a nurse you need to know these and how they affect the practice. There will be a lot ethical decisions that you will have to make during your career. By knowing the laws, this will help with the decisions you have to deal with. Laws prescribe proper behavior in society; they sanction acceptable behavior and prohibit unacceptable behavior. It’s important for you to know the basic’s of the legal system, which will help protect you from wrong doing. There are two different types of laws. Civil and criminal. Civil laws are laws that violates a person’s rights, conduct at issue is detrimental to the individual and involves an offense that is against an individual. Civil laws purpose is to......

Words: 1341 - Pages: 6

Free Essay

Ethics and Law in Nursing

...Contents: Topic Page Number Glossary Of Terms 1 Introduction 2 Aspect Of Care 3 The DNACPR Policy 4 Ethics 7 Patients Consent 9 Withholding Information 14 Informed Choice 17 Forcing Information Upon Patients 20 The Nurses Role 22 Conclusion 25 References 26 Appendix 27 Glossary of terms CPR: Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation. DNACPR: Do Not Attempt Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation. NMC: Nursing & Midwifery Council. GMC: General Medical Council. BMA: British Medical Association. GP: General Practitioner Introduction The Aim of this module is to encourage me to enhance my personal and professional skills, to increase the efficacy of patient care and interaction. Also to make me more aware of the legal, professional and ethical implications of practice. The module allowed me to further develop my knowledge of these topics: Ethics & Accountability, Legal Aspects of Practice, finally Accountability & Professional Practice. I was then asked to submit an essay of 4500 words based on the following: “Critically analyse an aspect of care from your practice setting that encompasses the ethical, professional & legal role of the nurse. Issues of accountability should be incorporated into this essay”. Aspect of care The aspect of care I have chosen to include in my essay is the “Do Not Attempt Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (DNACPR)” Adult......

Words: 5245 - Pages: 21

Premium Essay

Professional Ethics

...relationship among professional values, ethics, and legal issues. A person’s personal values and ethics can influence their professional values and ethics in the workplace. Finding the right balance between personal and professional views in the workplace will help foster a successful career. This paper will cover relationships between legal and ethical issues as well as personal values and professional ethics. Relationships between Legal and Ethical Issues According to Wacker-Guido & Watson (2010), there are eight ethical principles that nurses encounter when making decisions in clinical settings, autonomy, beneficence, no maleficence, veracity, justice, paternalism, fidelity, and respect or others. In other terms nurses have personal freedom, the right of self-determination, a duty to perform good actions, duty to prevent any harm for occurring to their patients, the obligation to tell the truth, treat all patients equally and fairly, allow others to make decisions for individual patients, keep promises and commitments they make, and to treat everyone with respect. Ethical values are influenced by personal feelings, and are interpreted differently depending on the beliefs of the individual. The Britannica Concise Encyclopedia defines the code of ethics for nurses as follows: The code of ethics for nurses was developed as a guide for carrying out nursing responsibilities in a manner consistent with quality on nursing care and the ethical obligations of the......

Words: 2628 - Pages: 11

Premium Essay

Assessment

...Legal and Ethical Issues with Case Studies Kimberley Corkran, Kleopatra G Jikokaj, Nicole Sherrod, Novia Williams Course/Number 12-08-2014 Mary Nicks Legal and Ethical Issues Introduction Nurses are governed by their nurses’ association code of ethics. Each individual also have values and beliefs which guides their behavior, however in the work setting the nurses association code of ethics supersede. As an individual, when we commit an offence, even though we are guided by our association code of ethics it is the law of our country by which we will be judged. In this paper we will be exploring how personal and societal values, and the American Nurses Association (ANA) code of ethics would influence decision in two scenarios involving patients. One case in which a nurse is a witness against her colleague in a malpractice case, in which her colleagues negligence resulted in harm to the patient, and she have reported her colleagues acts of negligence to her administrator on several occasion. The other case involves a patient who was diagnosed hemorrhagic stroke requiring ventilator assistance. Her family is divided in what the management should be, with her husband wanting to try everything to save her life and her children believing that she would not want to do surgery to be kept alive to live a poor quality life, which they believe will occur if she did the surgery. We will also be looking at the fundamental legal aspects of each case and the......

Words: 938 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Business Ethics in a Hospital Setting

...Business Ethics in a Hospital Setting Darlene V Nickerson Columbia Southern University Abstract Business ethics in a hospital setting includes a review of many areas. Ethical considerations include the areas of patient care, nursing ethics, physician ethics, patient privacy, and medical billing practices. This paper will touch on ethical concerns for each of these topics. Keywords: hospitals, ethics, patient care, nursing, physicians Business Ethics in a Hospital Setting When beginning a discussion of business ethics in a hospital setting it is important to take a broad approach. Because a hospital is a business and also a treatment facility, the ethical concerns must be considered not only for areas such as billing and privacy but also for ethics related to the appropriate care of patients, nursing ethics, and physician ethics. The ethics of the treatment methods employed based on the patient’s condition must also be considered. Ethics and Patient Care I believe that when discussing the ethical implications of patient care it is helpful to review a real-world scenario. One highly publicized case involved Terri Schiavo and her husband’s fight to stop her tube feedings as there was no hope for her recovery (VandeKieft, 2005). One reason for the high visibility of this case in the media occurred because the patient's husband and the patient's family disagreed on the diagnosis (VandeKieft, 2005). Terri suffered a cardiac arrest due to severe hypokalemia (low......

Words: 3684 - Pages: 15