ANA’s Code of Ethics for Nurses with Interpretive Statements
In this assignment, you will be presented with five nursing scenarios. Each scenario can be analyzed using certain provisions and interpretive statements from the ANA’s Code of Ethics for Nurses with Interpretive Statements. Provide brief answers in response to each case that includes what you would do if you were the nurse involved. Identify and explain the provisions and the interpretive statements that justify your responses.
Analysis of Ann’s case based on ANA’s Code of Ethics for Nurses with Interpretive Statements
1. Ann, RN is caring for John, a patient on the orthopedic unit of a local community hospital. John is one day post-op from a left total knee replacement. He was up in a chair for lunch today, but did not tolerate it well and refuses to get up for dinner. John weighs 350 lbs. and has several comorbidities. Ann feels frustrated and impatient with John and his unhealthy lifestyle.
Action: As the nurse, I would respect John’s decisions even though I do not agree with them. This means that since I know his unhealthy lifestyle is risky to his health, I would compassionately and patiently address this, offer him relevant information and resources to help him change his lifestyle and mitigate the risk.
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Justification: Provision 1 emphasizes on respect to patients’ dignity, worth and their unique attributes (American Nurses Association, 2021). As such, a nurse should practice with compassion and be unbiased. Respect should be given regardless of the patient’s nature of health and lifestyle such as in John’s case. Being respectful and compassionate will help establish a good relationship with the patient creating room to advise them and help promote health and wellness without overruling their decision. Patients have a right to receive accurate information to facilitate an informed decision.
The case of Sarah based on ANA’s Code of Ethics for Nurses with Interpretive Statements
2. Sarah, ARNP has been working with a group of physicians in their private practice. Recently, the physicians have become partners in a business that promotes multivitamins for such things as arthritis, energy level, and overall health. They have offered Sarah a portion of the profits for every patient she signs up for the vitamin program.
Action: Due to the conflict of interest presented by the situation, I would disclose the situation with the other partners for full disclosure of the position I am in. I would then seek to withdraw from the business.
Justification: Based on the 2nd provision of the ANA (2021), a nurse’s primary commitment is towards the patient. Promoting multivitamins for financial gain may create conflicts of interest thus affecting healthcare decisions (Kim, Nicotera, & McNulty, 2015). Addressing the conflict would help ensure patient safety and preserve the nurse’s professional integrity and ensuring there is collaboration.
Analysis of Rose’s case based on ANA’s Code of Ethics for Nurses with Interpretive Statements
3. Rose, RN is caring for Arthur, a 79-year old with a small, asymptomatic hernia and is scheduled for hernia repair surgery this morning. Consequently, he asks Rose if this surgery is really necessary, mentioning “watchful waiting” as an idea he found on the Internet. He had a brother that died having a minor surgery. Rose phones the physician and explains her patient’s concerns. The physician speaks to Arthur, who then agrees to have the surgery.
Action: As the RN, I would allow Arthur to go for the surgery since he has agreed to it after being spoken to by the Physician. However, I would facilitate a consultative meeting between Arthur, the physician and I before surgery. This would ensure Arthur secures all information on questions he may not have asked regarding the surgery.
Justification: Effective healthcare requires collaboration between all the different health professions (Tan, Zhou & Kelly, 2017). Provision 2 of ANA (2021) emphasizes on collaboration thus allowing Arthur for surgery indicates a shared decision and mutual trust between the RN and the physician.
Case analysis of Adam based on ANA’s Code of Ethics for Nurses with Interpretive Statements
4. Adam, RN has been working at an extended care facility for almost eight months and has become increasingly concerned about safety issues at the facility. He thinks the staffing is inadequate for the number of patients, and the policies and procedures are inaccessible. As one of only three RNs on the unit, Adam has been trying to improve conditions and make sure policies are visible and up-to-date. He has had very little success.
Action: To handle the scenario, as the RN, I would express my concerns about the safety issues to the facility’s administrator.
Justification: According to the interpretative statement 3.5 for the third provision, nurses should ensure protection for the patient’s health by acting on any concerns (Winland-Brown, Lachman, & Swanson, 2015). Nurses should follow a reporting process to ensure any questionable concerns are effectively handled for the promotion of a patient’s health.
Tom’s case based on ANA’s Code of Ethics for Nurses with Interpretive Statements
5. Tom, RN is eating lunch with his co-workers at his place of employment and a co-worker tells the group about a man who checked into the Emergency Department earlier in the day with a foreign object stuck in his rectum who was later sent to surgery for its removal. You and your co-workers find it funny, and it’s possible that others in and/or outside of the room could hear your discussion and laughter.
Action: As the RN involved, I would withdraw from the conversation since it is a breach on my obligation to maintain privacy and confidentiality.
Justification: Nurses should ensure confidentiality and privacy of patient’s information (Price, 2015). Provision 3 emphasizes on the promotion and protection of the patient’s health, rights and privacy. Additionally, interpretative statements further indicate that nurses should maintain confidentiality and control the extent within which patient’s information is disclosed.
American Nurses Association. (2021). Code of Ethics for Nurses with Interpretive Statements. Retrieved from: https://www.nursingworld.org/coe-view-only
Kim, W., Nicotera, A. M., & McNulty, J. (2015). Nurses’ perceptions of conflict as constructive or destructive. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 71(9), 2073-2083.
Price, B. (2015). Respecting patient confidentiality. Nursing Standard (2014+), 29(22), 50.
Tan, T. C., Zhou, H., & Kelly, M. (2017). Nurse–physician communication–An integrated review. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 26(23-24), 3974-3989.
Winland-Brown, J., Lachman, V. D., & Swanson, E. O. C. (2015). The new Code of ethics for nurses with interpretive statements (2015): Practical clinical application, Part I. Medsurg Nursing, 24(4), 268.