Code of Ethics for Nurses

Subject: Nursing
Pages: 3
Words: 763
Reading time:
3 min
Study level: Bachelor

Professionalism and Social Media

The American Nurses Association has developed the Code of Ethics, which defines professional responsibility, confidentiality, and compliance with patient rights protection. Social media holds a particular position as it directly affects interaction with patients, medical staff, and other team members to achieve a high treatment level. It is essential to evaluate social media profiles, pictures and posts to eliminate possible unprofessional or unethical activities causing adverse outcomes for healthcare institution reputation and nursing practice in general.

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Social Media Review

After reviewing my profile, pictures, and posts on all social media, I have identified unprofessional items that could negatively affect the nursing reputation. The American Nurses Association (ANA) determines principles for social networking. These include patient confidentiality, awareness of open access to profiles and information posted, separating personal and professional activities (Social Media, n. d.). However, it is suggested not to publish photographs taken in healthcare buildings on social media. However, some of my photos were taken in the cafeteria in the hospital. Therefore, even if several images did not capture the work process or patients, they are recognized as inappropriate.

Importance of Standard of Conduct

The ethical basis of the professional activity of a nurse is humanity and mercy. Accepting and sharing common human and general medical moral values, nurses’ ethics code declares their unique nature of relationships with colleagues and patients (American Nurses Association [ANA], 2015). The most important tasks of a nurse’s professional activity are the comprehensive all-around care of patients and the relief of their suffering, health preservation and rehabilitation, health promotion and disease prevention (ANA, 2015). The Code of Ethics provides clear moral guidelines for a nurse’s professional activity and is designed to promote consolidation and increase the nursing profession’s prestige in society. For instance, any violation of this trust can negatively affect relationships and the profession’s trustworthiness (NCSBN, 2018). Thus, nurses are responsible for sustaining a standard of conduct accompanied by the profession’s standards.

HIPAA Violation

Patients expect privacy with dignity and respect within a treatment period. Consequently, confidentiality becomes the crucial aspect in guaranteeing patient data (National Council of State Boards of Nursing [NCSBN], 2018). One of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) ‘s main objectives is to protect the confidentiality of the patient’s health information (NCSBN, 2018). Thus, the relationships between medical personnel and patient relationships should be based on trust.

With regard to the examples of personal conduct violating HIPAA, considered unethical and unprofessional, it should be noted that health care consumers require primarily personal data protection. If users are aware of the healthcare facility, they can define the patient if some treatment information is revealed through social media platforms (Edge, 2017). According to Edge (2017), it frequently occurs in nursing students within the community where the medical institutions are established. For instance, publishing a patient’s photo, even with a positive attitude, is considered a violation of HIPAA and unprofessional behavior (NCSBN, 2018). Neighbors and other people can recognize that person with severe diseases and the hospital which provides treatment (NCSBN, 2018). Thus, consequences vary from the perspective of possible harm to the patient or medical institution. The patient expects security and privacy, mainly when it concerns such sensitive subjects as health conditions.

Christian Values and Improvement of Social Media Activity

Based on my social media analysis, I try to treat users like actual people engaging in conversations and discussing multiple topics. Respect is one of the Christian values; it directly relates to recognizing human worth and dignity. Therefore, I pay attention to the personality and the message; I try to follow the principles of truth, noble, and kindness on social media. For instance, concerning the content in my profiles, there is a lack of informative posts and visual content related to the medical field. The nursing profession can be promoted by educating the public on Twitter. It can be considered a practical tool to establish health-related discussions in public to trend well-being topics (How Nurses Should Be Using Social Media, 2018). Due to specific hashtags, my social media activity would be improved, enhancing effective communication to promote preventative measures and health consciousness.

To sum up, the nurse must respect patients’ privacy and modesty by maintaining nursing practice standards that minimize intrusion into the patient’s privacy. Activity in social media should avoid complaining about patients or issues in the work process and discuss employment and colleagues’ place. Overall, nurses should use social media to benefit healthcare institutions and the system in general. Nurses should stay aware of the outcomes of disclosing patient-related information according to patient privacy and confidentiality.

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American Nurses Association. (2015). Code of ethics for nurses with interpretive statements. American Nurses Association.

Edge, W. (2017). Nursing Professionalism: Impact of Social Media Use among Nursing Students. Journal of Health Communication, 2(3). Web.

How Nurses Should Be Using Social Media. (2018) EveryNurse. Web.

National Council of State Boards of Nursing. (2018). A Nurse’s Guide to the Use of Social Media

Social Media. (n.d.) ANA Entreprise.