Ethics in Nursing
SECTION A ( 1.5 pages )
Code of Ethics for Nurses, Encountering Challenging Dilemmas and Mentorship
The role of the NP is quite rewarding. However, it can be wrought with challenges, as well.
Review the Code of Ethics for Nurses and examine potential challenges the NP may
encounter in practice and create potential solutions. Share this in your paper.
Might the availability of other NPs as mentors impact how the novice NP manages
challenges? Evaluate the pros and cons of mentorship and the novice NP in negotiating
challenges encountered in the role.
Include a reference list at the end of this section 4 minimum.
SECTION B (1.5 pages)
Professional Development and Lifelong Learning.
NPs must invest in lifelong learning strategies for professional development, to maintain
licensure and certification and for personal enrichment. Fortunately, numerous options
and opportunities for lifelong learning and professional development exist. NPs may
engage in research, policy and decision making, writing for publication, continuing
educational opportunities, teaching and mentoring novice NPs, to name a few. Identify and
discuss a few of your own professional interests and areas you envision focusing on for
ongoing professional development and lifelong learning.
The role of Nursing Practitioners is to enhance the work that conventional nurses have been
doing over the years. Their increased qualifications automatically result in increased
responsibility in the healthcare sector. While this will increase their contribution to the
restoration and maintenance of public health, it also introduces new challenges that Nursing
Practitioners have to overcome in their quest to deliver quality services while concurrently
maintaining a good ethical standing. A nursing practitioner may encounter challenges while he or
she is trying to adhere to some sections of the Code of Ethics that is prescribed for all those
employed in the nursing sector. These include the patient’s right to self-determination,
acceptance of accountability and responsibility and the protection of participants of research
(American Nursing Association, 2011; Kunyk and Austin, 2012).
In as far as the “Patient’s right to self-determination” goes, a nursing practitioner will face the
challenge of having to accept that the patient has the final say in regard to the medical
interventions that will be carried out on him or her. The difference in knowledge gives the
nursing practitioner relative to the patient creates a scenario where it is tempting to manipulate
the patient into accepting a given treatment. The manipulation may be in the form of the
registered nurse exaggerating potential consequences of refraining from the named medical
treatment or procedure. In such situations the most a nursing practitioner can do is make the
patient fully aware of the actual risks and also the potential benefits of agreement to the medical
advice being dispensed.
Acceptance of accountability and responsibility can also be a challenge to a registered nurse due
to the profound implications that this new-found responsibility has. Unlike nurses whose scope
of work is highly dependent on physician’s instructions, nursing practitioners have a relatively
elevated position with respect to the influence they have in decisions about medical interventions
that patients need to be subjected to. In the event that a patient has a condition that is unique or
uncommon, the registered nurse will have difficulty in making the decision since counter-
productive interventions will at best lead to the worsening of the patient’s condition and at worst
lead to death. These issues can at times lead to public inquests or lawsuits which taint a
professional’s name and even lead to a license being revoked. In such situations, a registered
nurse needs to consult widely prior to making a decision on the way forward for the patient
(Robinson et al, 2014).
The main advantage of mentorship is that it facilitates for the monitoring of progress on a one on
one basis making it easier to deal with subjective challenges. The main disadvantage of
mentorship however is the fact that it creates a possibility for the mentor’s flaws to be passed
down to the individual under mentorship and this could become part of a cycle therefore making
a problem ingrained within a healthcare organization (Butts and Rich, 2013).
American Nurses Association. (2011). ANA Code of ethics for nurses with interpretive
Butts, J. B., & Rich, K. L. (2013). Nursing ethics: Across the curriculum and into practice. Jones
& Bartlett Publishers.
Kunyk, D., & Austin, W. (2012). Nursing under the influence A relational ethics perspective.
Nursing ethics, 19(3), 380-389.
Robinson, E. M., Lee, S. M., Zollfrank, A., Jurchak, M., Frost, D., & Grace, P. (2014).
Enhancing moral agency: clinical ethics residency for nurses. Hastings Center Report, 44(5), 12-
As an individual the key areas that I am interested in pursuing for my sustained professional
development in the field of nursing are the pursuing of continuing education opportunities as
well as participation in policy making for the formulation of decision making guidelines. I
believe that these two areas provide me with the best chance of making a sustainable positive
difference in this field (Hamric et al, 2013).
Continuing education that is currently available exists in the form of post-graduate courses and
numerous training seminars on different aspects of the work of a nursing practitioner. The field
of academia is one that is knowledge oriented and this comes from the heavy reliance on
research materials for the passage of theoretical and practical knowledge to others in this field
(Fairman et al, 2011). The lectures, assignments, projects and presentations will improve my
aptitude on relevant matters pertaining to the position of registered nurses in the healthcare
system. I also stand the chance to interact with a large number of people who have had unique
experiences as nursing practitioners in different parts of the country and possibly the world. The
presentations and assignments that I will participate in will also expose me to aspects of nursing
that I was not familiar with, in the process making me more resourceful (Lawrence and Murray,
I also have an inclination towards participation in providing advice on policies that are being
made or adjusted to accommodate the work of registered nurses. I believe that ethics need to be
heavily applied to these policies in such a manner that ensures the public is the greatest
beneficiary of the work of nursing practitioners. It is of no use if nursing practitioners are
accommodated in a healthcare sector but they have limited capacity to perform. In this light I
believe my participation in policy making will help in bridging the gap that exists between
people most in need of basic healthcare services and the increasing number of registered nurses. I
believe that engaging in policy development will also make my services relevant to other
countries whose healthcare systems are also undergoing development (Mason et al, 2013).
Fairman, J. A., Rowe, J. W., Hassmiller, S., & Shalala, D. E. (2011). Broadening the scope of
nursing practice. New England Journal of Medicine, 364(3), 193-196.
Hamric, A. B., Hanson, C. M., Tracy, M. F., & O’Grady, E. T. (Eds.). (2013). Advanced practice
nursing: An integrative approach. Elsevier Health Sciences.
Lawrence, B., & Murray, L. (2013). Practitioner-Based Enquiry: Principles and Practices for
Postgraduate Research. Routledge.
Mason, D. J., Leavitt, J. K., & Chaffee, M. W. (2013). Policy and Politics in Nursing and
Healthcare-Revised Reprint. Elsevier Health Sciences.