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8

Canadian Nurses Association

Part I. Nursing Values and Ethical Responsibilities

Nurses in all contexts and domains of practice and at all levels of decision-

making bear the ethical responsibilities identified under each of the seven

primary nursing values.

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These responsibilities apply to nurses’ interactions with

all persons who have health-care needs or are receiving care as well as with students,

colleagues and other health-care providers. The responsibilities are intended to

guide nurses in applying the

Code

to their practice. They also serve to articulate

nursing values to employers, other health-care providers and the public. Nurses help

their colleagues implement the

Code

, and they ensure that nursing students are

acquainted with it.

A. Providing Safe, Compassionate, Competent and Ethical Care

Nurses provide safe, compassionate, competent and ethical care.

Ethical responsibilities:

1. Nurses have a responsibility to conduct themselves according to the ethical

responsibilities outlined in this document and in practice standards in what they

do and how they interact with persons receiving care and other members of the

health-care team

.

2. Nurses engage in compassionate care through their speech and body language

and through their efforts to understand and care about others’ health-care needs.

3. Nurses build trustworthy relationships with persons receiving care as the

foundation of meaningful communication, recognizing that building these

relationships involves a

conscious

effort. Such relationships are critical to

understanding people’s needs and concerns.

4. Nurses question, intervene, report and address unsafe, non-compassionate,

unethical or incompetent practice or conditions that interfere with their ability

to provide safe, compassionate, competent and ethical care; and they support

those who do the same (see Appendix B).

5. Nurses are honest

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and take all necessary actions to prevent or minimize

patient

safety incidents

. They learn from

near misses

and work with others to reduce

the potential for future risks and preventable harms (see Appendix B).

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The value and responsibility statements in the

Code

are numbered and lettered for ease of use, not to indicate

prioritization.

6

Provincial and territorial legislation and nursing practice standards may include further direction regarding requirements

for disclosure and reporting.