[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The current reform of nursing education is resulting in major changes in the curricula of colleges of nursing. For the first time, ethical and moral issues are being seen as an important theme underpinning the entire course. The moral theorist with whose work most nurse teachers are acquainted is Kohlberg. In this paper, it is suggested that his work, and the conventions of morality which he exemplifies, may not be the most appropriate from which to address the moral issues facing the nurse. The author suggests that the work of Carol Gilligan of Harvard university is of great significance, not only for nurses involved in the teaching of ethics, but for all nurses. Gilligan's emphasis on caring and relationships accords with the common experience of the nurse, and echoes the current revival of interest within nursing in examining, and valuing, the phenomenon of caring.
Journal of Medical Ethics 01/1993; 18(4):202-5. DOI:10.1136/jme.18.4.202 · 1.51 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Moral agency involves risk. It is an action that is at odds with the traditional role of the nurse. However, as nurses assume more responsibility and accountability for client management and outcomes in an increasingly complex and uncertain environment, it is essential to approach ethical dilemmas in a manner consistent with the caring component of nursing. Case examples are utilized to illustrate the attributes necessary for nurses to fulfill their obligations in their nurse-client relationships.
Nursing Forum 01/1994; 29(1):5-11. DOI:10.1111/j.1744-6198.1994.tb00144.x
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Nursing is a manifestation of a value according to which it is morally good to promote physical and psychological well-being. Such a moral obligation involves making judgements. Ethical judgements are the decisions a person makes on whether a particular act is right or wrong. Ethical principles serve as the basis for ethical rules and as a framework for decision-making. Ethical theory provides a rationale that explains the principles and rules in order to provide a structured approach to ethical reasoning. Although ethics is not a science with verifiable answers, a knowledge of ethical theory enables nurses to make decisions in a manner that is more comprehensive and well reasoned than is opinion or intuition. In this paper, an overview of ethical theories, ethical principles and influences on ethical or moral reasoning is presented as well as the ethical decision-making process.
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