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Values, Ethics, and Advocacy
 Ethics is the study of philosophical ideals of right
and wrong behavior. It is the study of good
conduct, character, and motives. (Iggy, pg.389)
 Ethics is the study of social morality and
philosophical reflection on society’s norms and
practices. It is the practical application of moral
philosophy and asks the question- “What should I
do in this situation?” (Burkhardt, pg. 29)
Ethical Terminology
 Autonomy- Refers to a person’s
 Beneficence- Refers to taking positive
actions to help others.
 Nonmaleficence- “Do no harm”
 Justice- Refers to fairness
 Fidelity- Refers to keeping promises and
Ethics and Nursing
 Code of Ethics- Sets forth ideas of conduct within a group.
They are a set of ethical principles that are agreed upon
and accepted by members of a group.
 Can include:
– Expectations of group members
– Standards by which members operate
– Guidelines to help determine appropriate behavior and
help with determine answers when questions arise.
 What is the uses and limitations of a professional code of
Ethics and Nursing
 Nursing Code of Ethics
– Has been formalized by at least 2 organizations, the
American Nurses Association (ANA) and the
International Council of Nurses (ICN). (Box 21-2, pg 391)
– Both organization’s Code of Ethics include the same
basic principles of responsibility, accountability,
confidentiality, advocacy, and veracity.
– Website for ANA-
– Website for ICN-
 A value is a personal belief about the worth
of a given idea, attitude, custom,or object
that sets standards that influence behavior.
 Values are ideals, beliefs, customs, modes
of conduct, qualities, or goals that are highly
prized or preferred by individuals, groups, or
Values Formation
 Values form and develop as a result of:
– Family
– Religion
– Social organizations
– Community
– Experiences
Values Clarification
 The process of becoming more conscious of
and naming what one values or considers
worthy. It involves understanding how our
values affect our thoughts and behaviors.
 Outcome of values clarification= self
awareness/ personal insight
 Bioethics is the practice of ethical
considerations in health care situations
 Give some examples of some health care
situations that have caused ethical
dilemmas, that have been in the news.
Bioethical Issues
Quality of life
Genetic screening
Futile care
Allocation of scarce resources: medical
 Allocation of scarce resources: the nursing
Processing an ethical dilemma
 1. Determine if issue is an ethical dilemma.
 2. Gather data relevant to issue.
 3. Examine and determine your own values
on the issue.
 4. Verbalize the problem.
 5. Consider possible courses of action.
 6. Negotiate the outcome.
 7. Evaluate the action.
 To advocate means to speak or write in support of
something or someone. An advocate is someone
who pleads another’s case.
 As nurse’s we advocate:
– By assisting client/ family in interpreting information
– By offering assistance to the client in decision making
and explaining the implications of the client’s decision
– By ensuring that the client receives appropriate care