Nurses encounter ethical dilemmas as they provide health services to patients. One common moral issue is whether nurses should disclose some medical conditions to the patients and their family members. Nursing ethics dictate that medical practitioners should give patients positive feedback, and they should not demoralize them with blatant comments, such as they will not recover quickly. For this reason, nurses should undertake their activities with the common interest of assisting the patients to recover from their illnesses (Hamid, 2016). Contrarily, nurses should provide all necessary information about the disease to patients and their family members.
Although nurses should disclose all information about the disease to the patient and family, they should also analyze the possible effects of revealing information to the victim. In some cases, a patient’s relatives might request the medical practitioner to conceal the health status of the disease from the patient. For that reason, the nurse might feel to be in an ethical conflict between the patient’s will, the right to have the patient enlightened about their condition, and the moral obligation of non-maleficence. Nonetheless, in various situations, nurses should analyze the circumstances at hand and determine if it is prudent to inform the patient about their health status (Shapira-Lishchinsky, 2009). If the information is beneficial, the nurse should reveal the health details to the patient. However, if the data will cause harm to the patient, such as psychological distress, then the nurse should not disclose the particulars lest the condition worsens.
In conclusion, the health of a patient is paramount to a nurse. Additionally, the health practitioner should ensure that regardless of the decision they make, the result leads to an improvement of the patient’s condition (Akaranga, 2016). Various health workers opt to follow specific professional directives that do not have positive patient outcomes, thus, making the resultant effect to become unethical. Researchers affirm that the success of applying ethics in nursing is only evident through the results displayed by a patient. Therefore, the ethical decision a nurse chooses to undertake should lead towards improving the patient’s health.
- Akaranga, S. I. (2016). Ethical Considerations and their Applications to Research: A case of the University of Nairobi. Journal of Educational Policy and Entrepreneurial Research.
- Hamid, S. (2016). Ethical issues faced by nurses during nursing practice in district Layyah, Pakistan. Diversity & Equality in Health and Care.
- Shapira-Lishchinsky, O. (2009). Ethical dilemmas: The experiences of Israeli nurses. Qualitative health research, 19(11), 1602-1611.