"Pursuing the Peace of Mind:" Nurses' Experiences of Facing Clinical Ethical Dilemmas

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Shu-Yuan Chao, BS, MEd, DNSc
Nursing Department, Hungkung University, Sha-Lu, Taichung County, Taiwan

Learning Objective 1: The learner will be able to know "pursuing the peace of mind" is found to reflect the process of nurse's ethical decision-making.

Learning Objective 2: The learner will be able to know the factors influence on ethical decision-making for nurses.

Purpose: The purpose of this study is to explore nurses’ experiences of facing ethical dilemmas, which include the issues of encountering ethical dilemmas and nurses’ experiences in work place.

Methods: Using grounded theory method, we adopted in-depth individual interview to collect data, transcribed the interview content word by word, and analyzed the data with constant comparison method. Data were analyzed and collected at the same time until data saturated. And the total number of respondents participated in this study is 22 people from diverse settings.

Results: The most disturbing issue for nurses is care in the end of life. In addition, "pursuing the peace of mind" is found to reflect the process of ethical decision-making. The model consists of four components, "assessing differences", "self-dialogue", "integrating differences", and "giving meaning", which process step by step. And the triggers of ethical decision-making were ethical awareness, which contained moral awareness, responsibility and affection; and ethical awareness was affected by five antecedents, which were expertise, years of employment, past managing experiences, enthusiastic, and similar experiences in life.

Conclusion: The results of this study would be the basis of an innovative nursing ethics course, and could be applied to clinical in-service education.The model of this study also benefits for further experimental teaching research, and theoretical development in the future.