Nurses work to assist doctors in the medical treatment of people with all types of backgrounds. As such, moral dilemmas can actually have a hand in the quality of treatment that certain patients get. Nurses are expected to treat hardened drug users with the same level of compassion as law-abiding senior citizens and innocent children. RN to MSN students at the University of Arizona must consciously think about being empathetic and caring in all circumstances. Some patients can be combative and seemingly turn away effective healthcare treatment options because of a mistrust in the system or existing mental health impairments. Learning to deal with the top morality issues that come up during the course of a nurse’s career will keep you focused on providing excellent care to all of your patients.
Keeping All Patient Data Confidential
So long as you don’t believe that a law has been broken and that the authorities need to come in and talk personally to a patient, any and all information having to do with their health status and care needs to stay confidential. You shouldn’t gossip with other nurses about patients, even if they create chaos or otherwise seem to seek attention. Provide treatment and speak to human resources if you have questions about how to react in difficult individual situations. Don’t put your nursing credentials at risk by revealing any patient data.
Reporting Suspected Cases of Abuse and Neglect
Some of your patients may come in with unexplained abrasions and be unable to be screened without a guardian, spouse or companion piping up and offer their input. You might feel a heavy weight in your stomach as you continue to render care to a patient you suspect of being a victim of domestic violence, child, or elder abuse. Do what you can to give adequate care and make a report to the local authorities so that the patient can get legal help.
Answering Questions from the Family of Patients
If a patient has given you permission to speak to their loved ones then you can talk about the details of their most recent medical treatments. Many patients appreciate nurses who can explain what will happen as they recover, as well as detail the type of assistance they may need. There are also patients who will not want any of their medical information disclosed. Patient care and family support procedures are covered within most RN to MSN online study courses, so confirm what information you can reveal to the family of patients in your care before you disclose anything.
It always feels good to do the right thing and professional RN to MSN online nursing students have plenty of experience in ethics when performing their jobs. Sometimes it may be hard to maintain a neutral position when you know that a patient has been mistreated or neglected, but you need to report your findings to the correct state department if you want there to be a happy outcome. Find an emotional support group or mental health professional if you are having trouble coping with the stress of working with the public but keep all patient data strictly confidential.