Coping With Ethical Issues in Nursing Practice

Nursing practice at all levels experiences a variety of ethical issues during their . Over the last thirty years, an has emerged that deals with nursing ethics. This offers comprehensive philosophical critiques of the issues that are faced by nurses and the best strategies to deal with them. The most disturbing and frequent ethical issues reported by nurses include informed consent, protecting the rights of patients, and human dignity.

Others include the use of , providing care with possible risks to their health, and using physical/chemical restraints. Furthermore, it includes working with unethical/impaired, incompetent colleagues, and poor working conditions among others. Several strategies can be implemented to help cope with these issues and this discussion will look at the issue of working with incompetent colleagues.

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Key strategies pertinent to ethical issues
Staying in control of ones work is difficult enough. However, having to deal with colleagues who are incompetent and watch over their work can be frustrating. The following strategies can be used to deal with an incompetent colleague.

Have the facts right
It is always wise to have the facts right before taking any step. It could be that the colleague just has a different way of working. However, if the objective is met, there will be no need for change. Jumping to conclusions is wrong unless incompetency is confirmed. Asking for a second opinion from another colleague can be helpful (Nettina, 1996).

Look for any underlying causes
Individuals go through some difficult moments in their lives. Thus, the colleague may be suffering a difficult moment hence affecting the work quality. This is not directly helpful as someone needs to cover up for them. However, understanding that the problem is not due to laziness or ignorance can help to accept the extra work that needs to be done. Adding worries to the colleague may not be helpful and may end up causing more harm than good.

Speak to the colleague about the problem
Once the incompetency has been confirmed, it is worth talking to him/her about it. One should not be abusive or rude. However, one should just point out when something is wrong and make new suggestions for doing what is right. One should act gently as it could be that the colleagues had not realized that what they were doing was wrong. Furthermore, they could not have realized that they were being noticed. If the response is rude and the colleague does not change ways, then it is only wise to report them to the higher authorities (Iyer & Aiken, 2001).

Collect and analyze the evidence
One should make note of any issue that may arise including the time, date, and the people involved. The effect of the incompetency should also be noted, and the negative effect the issue has on the workload of other employees. This can be used as a statement proof in case the cases require to be reported to higher authorities (Iyer & Aiken, 2001).

Report the issue to the boss
Once the evidence has been gathered, and the colleague has refused change, the boss should be informed. If nothing is done, one can confront the boss if it is necessary.

Importance in nursing
Nursing is a critical practice that requires the professional to and professional expertise. In this case, it involves dealing with human beings, and any mistakes as a result of ignorance or incompetence can be lethal. Therefore, it is very important to deal with an incompetent college as soon as the problem is detected. When working in a situation where incompetence and errors are crucial and peoples lives are put at risk, the other colleagues could also be in a dilemma. A colleague who makes mistakes regularly may make one afraid that he/she will get the blame for the mistake. Therefore, it is important to solve the problem or report it to the boss if the colleague is not willing to change.

Nurse professionals are also faced with numerous tasks. Thus, one nurse having to cover up for an incompetent colleague can be stressful. This shows that the practice requires a great deal of attention and anyone not competent enough to deal with the pressures involved should be dealt with appropriately. It is also not fair that one person is left with the burden of taking care of other peoples duties and is not getting extra remuneration for the extra work done which could be initially avoided (Perrin & McGhee, 2006).

Dealing with an incompetent colleague is a management issue. In the real world, nurses will never have to deal with incompetent colleagues. However, this is inevitable owing to the changes complexity and changes that continue to occur in the nursing world. It is also possible that some people got employment as they can talk well and give the impression of a person that they are not. Others get their way past interviews and managers and end up getting a job that they are not qualified to handle. This incompetence is also realized after mistakes are done constantly and the right strategy is required to take care of the issue at hand.

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