The Nursing Shortage and Ethics: Up Front and Personal

Nurses Activism


  • Home Health Columnist / Guide
    Specializes in Vents, Telemetry, Home Care, Home infusion.

The Nursing Shortage and Ethics: Up Front and Personal.

By: Silva, Mary Cipriano and Ludwick, Ruth (August 13, 2001).

Online Journal of Issues in Nursing

...We invite you to read these and the other OJIN articles on the shortage and then submit to this column a story about how the nursing shortage has ethically affected you or your patients/clients. Your stories can also be from your personal life (i.e., when you or a family member was a care recipient). You, the reader, can best identify and write stories about ethical issues that you face day to day in your practice as a result of the shortage.

Your stories will help tell about the impact of the shortage and perhaps give insights into ways we can handle ethical dilemmas related to it. We believe that "... ethics is best understood, discussed and informed from issues confronting us in everyday practice, ..." because "Our credibility, strength, and legacy as a profession will be measured by our ethical treatment of patients, families and communities." (Ludwick & Silva, 2001)...




Home Health Columnist / Guide


11 Articles; 18,055 Posts

Specializes in Vents, Telemetry, Home Care, Home infusion.



1 Article; 5,758 Posts

Just was looking around nursing spectrum. Interesting thread over there about using drugs labeled for one person for different patient. Person who raised question to state board recieved sever tounge lashing. Of course the Ivory tower types would say no to that. However, IN THE REAL world nurses are forced to do it everyday to prevent injury to patients. Why, because it is not always easy to lay your hands on what you need. Pharmacy hours have been severly reduced at hospitals and techs eliminated. There are long delays between the time the drug is needed and the time a nurse actually gets hands on it. If the patients are going to suffer harm and the same med is avaliable with some other patients name it is going to be used. Just sounds like classic case for this thread. Which is eithically more wrong, using a medication in above way or allowing harm to patient?


3,778 Posts

Specializes in Trauma,ER,CCU/OHU/Nsg Ed/Nsg Research.

Very good question, Oramar!


1 Article; 5,758 Posts

If you are interested the thread is called Officially Reamed. It is a classic example of the kind of ethical situations we find ourselves in everyday. Like I said it is over at NS.


213 Posts

interesting post oramar. i see nothing wrong with using a med with another pt's name on it. after all a tylenol is a tylenol is a tylenol no matter whose name is on it. but to prevent any backlash it is mandatory to remove the other pt's. name from the med. the only thing i used to get mad at was when another nurse would take my pt's med for use on his/her pt. and not tell me so it was not there when i needed it. we all have to be considerate of each other. :cool:

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