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Nursing Research Sample

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ICNE YALE #98

ETHICAL PROBLEMS ENCOUNTERED BY NURSING STUDENTS IN TURKEY

Fethiye Erdil and Fatos Korkmaz
Nursing students increasingly encounter ethical problems during their clinical practice which sometimes infringe the rights of patients. However, so far there is no study in Turkey on the extent of problems from the perspective of nursing students, as well as how nurses are involved in ethical decision making process. This study is conducted at Hacettepe University Health Science Faculty Nursing Department with the aim of identifying the ethical problems confronted by nursing students. Eighty-four third class and 69 senior nursing students were volunteers to participate in this study. Their age ranged from 19 to 23 years. All participants have taken the course entitled ‘Nursing History and Deontology’ which include 14 hours ethical content. Students were asked to describe moral problems that they observed or encountered during their clinical practice. Ethical problems at clinical practice were reported as physical maltreatment of patients (28%), inappropriate approaches toward patients which cause psychological distress (24%), violation of privacy (21%), providing inadequate information (16%) and discrimination based on the social and economical status (16%). The reasons of these ethical problems were stated by students as the unprofessional conduct of physicians (34%) and nurses (44%), and ineffective hospital management (9%). The most striking finding of this study was that 75% of nurses were not involved in decision making process of resolving these problems. Students suggested that nurses at clinics should be much more informed about the patient rights, ethical problems, and professional conduct. Since nurses are the role models for nursing students at practice, the results of this study demonstrate the importance of an in-service education for nurses…...

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