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Canadian Nurses Association


determining fairness on the basis of people’s needs. This means that those

who are less fortunate would receive more resources than those who are well off.


in health care, the fulfillment of each individual’s needs as well as the

individual’s opportunity to reach full potential as a human being. Health equity

occurs when everyone has an opportunity to reach their full potential, and no one is

disadvantaged from achieving this potential because of their social position or other

socially determined circumstances (CNA, 2013).

Ethical work environment:

an environment with the potential to promote moral

integrity and moral agency (Fry, Veatch, & Taylor, 2011).


a branch of philosophy that deals with questions of right and wrong and of

ought and ought not in our interactions with others.

Ethics model:

a scheme showing areas for reflection on an individual’s practice

and providing steps in ethical decision-making. Normally, this model includes critical

questions to consider in reflecting on or in dealing with an ethical situation.

Everyday ethics:

how nurses pay attention to ethics in carrying out their common

daily interactions, including how they approach their practice and reflect on their

ethical commitments to persons receiving care or with health-care needs.


equalizing people’s opportunities to participate in and enjoy life, given their

circumstances (Caplan, Light, & Daniels, 1999), and society’s equitable distribution

of resources (in health care this means an expectation of equitable treatment).


in matters of caregiving, family is recognized as those people

identified by the person receiving or in need of care who provide familial support,

whether or not there is a biologic relationship. However, in matters of legal decision-

making it must be noted that provincial legislation is not uniform across Canada and

may include an obligation to recognize family members in priority according to their

biologic relationship (CNA, 1994).

Fitness to practise:

all the qualities and capabilities of an individual relevant to

their practice as a nurse, including but not limited to freedom from any cognitive,

physical, psychological or emotional condition and dependence on alcohol or drugs

that impairs their ability to practise nursing (CRNBC, 2008; CRNNS, 2017).