Every nurse should have a professional moral compass. The compass represents values that seek to control an individual’s judgment based on ethics. Ethics offer an understanding of the standards and moral values overseeing nursing practice, behavior, and relations (Purtilo, 1993). A nurse should nurture individual ethics through personal, cultural, and divine values that grow into a moral compass.
During my teenage years, I longed to be a nurse. As a juvenile, I contributed to Health Occupation Students of America. Through the program, I reinforced my aspiration to be a nurse. I have always upheld that nursing is deep-rooted in the loyalty to public service and the irrefutable longing to assist the needy. I believe that nursing is not all about tackling diseases, but also an obligation to deliver excellent patient care personalized to meet the needs of every individual. My professional compass integrates the understanding of medicine with concerned caring, which upholds the self-respect of every patient.
I believe that nursing care should be holistic and should honor patient values. As such, my nursing philosophy is to treat every person regardless of their race, age, social class, or gender with the utmost empathy and integrity. I preferred nursing to other careers because it would enable me to exploit my knowledge, experience, morals, and attitudes by helping the sick in society. In my opinion, the foundation of nursing is to uphold a healthy relationship with my patients, to be their supporter, and above all to treat everyone with admiration.
Individual, cultural, and spiritual principles that have influenced me
Individual, cultural, and spiritual principles have influenced my perspectives and philosophy of nursing. I am a responsible, competent, confident, passionate, and loyal nurse. Through this, I have managed to execute my duties with diligence earning the trust of most clients. By embracing confidentiality, I have been able to safeguard my clients’ privacy. Similarly, my accountability has enabled me to be answerable to my day-to-day duties.
To be an effective nurse, an individual should be culturally informed (Lachman, 2006). In this regard, I have managed to integrate my cultural values into my nursing practice. The values are privacy, individualism, equality, and goodness of humanity. Being an American, I have upheld privacy with the utmost respect as envisioned in our constitution. Through this, I have been able to safeguard my patients’ privacy.
I have ensured that their medical data are not compromised. Similarly, I have incorporated equality in my nursing practice as protected in the Declaration of Independence (Lachman, 2006). By doing so, I have managed to treat every client with the utmost understanding and integrity. Every nurse should strive to assist their clients to achieve or uphold completeness in every aspect of their being. In this respect, my spiritual values have allowed me to satisfy the religious needs of my clients.
Definition of values, morals, and ethics
Concerning my nursing practice, values refer to an individual’s philosophy. Morals refer to nurses’ values of conduct concerning what is not permissible for them to do (Ulrich, 2012). On the other hand, ethics refers to the study of nurses’ conduct based on their behaviors to stress the right and the wrong. Nurses frequently undergo difficulties when their values, philosophy, and worldview clashes with their obligation to practice leading to ethical dilemmas (Ulrich, 2012).
For instance, organizational constraints experienced by nurses limit the expression of their morals, attitudes, and worldview in their day-to-day activities (Purtilo, 1993). I believe that moral dilemmas in nursing cannot be overemphasized. Therefore, I understand that the decisions reached on these dilemmas can affect my career and my patients’ lives. Some of the dilemmas I may encounter are quality contrasted with quantity of life, pro-choice contrasted with pro-life, autonomy contrasted with management, and experimental understanding contrasted with individual beliefs.
My thoughts regarding morals and dilemmas
Every reflective person in the course of his or her life is required to come up with decisions (Lachman, 2006). As such, decision-making arises in every aspect of our lives ranging from personal goals in life, personal relationships, and proper conduct in our interaction with others (Lachman, 2006). In my nursing practice, my personal views affect my behavior and decision-making. My views about responsibility, competency, confidence, passion, and loyalty have influenced my behavior. Similarly, the above views have helped me to recognize ethical issues when they arise and recognize approaches needed to solve them.
Through this, I have managed to come up with ethical and effective decisions. Similarly, the above views have enabled me to learn more about available ethical decision-making processes and ways to enhance ethical behaviors in health care. To me, the dissimilarity between ethical decision-making and the usual decision-making requires a nurse to weigh values before rushing to a judgment. Thus, during ethical decision-making nurses should note that values and judgments play crucial roles. In any health care organization, high ethical standards can be achieved through the organization and individuals’ efforts to conform to appropriate moral values. However, when applying professional ethics in an organization, some aspects need to be taken into consideration.
Lachman, V. D. (2006). Applied ethics in nursing. New York: Springer Pub. Co.
Purtilo, R. (1993). To Heal Sometimes, To Comfort Always. Philadelphia: W.B. Saunders Co.
Ulrich, C. M. (2012). Nursing ethics in everyday practice. Indianapolis, IN: Sigma Theta Tau International.