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Nurse Ethics And Legal Issue

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In the case scenario, it is seen that Antonio is having ulcerated sores in his right leg is assisted by a home health nurse, Dan. Dan identified that his leg ulcer is not improving and he recommended Antonio to visit a physician; however; he was not in agreement to make an appointment to see a doctor. Dan went for a vacation for two weeks and instructed him to take care of his ulcer and took a picture of the sore and send to his colleagues. In this situation, initially, I would make him understand about the harm concerned with his leg ulcer if he does not visit a physician. Negligence of duty and ordinary procedure will create damage to the patient, which is against the ethics and value of nurse (Pesut et al., 2019). I know that if I went on vacation, it would worsen the condition of the patient as he himself is not willing to take any care for his illness. It was not a responsibility to care for him and maintain the ethics of beneficence and non-maleficence (Kotaska, 2017). Therefore, I would cancel my vacation as I know if I hand over the case of Antonio to other nursing staffs, it can pose a problem to the patient no one knew about his case history. As per the value and ethics of the nurse, I would take him to the doctor for his leg ulcer so that he can get better medication for faster recovery. I would encourage him towards independence by making him understand the need for it for better healing (Nguyen et al., 2016).

As seen in the case scenario, Donna’s five-year-old son is having a reoccurring rash on his abdomen and back, which is itchy and painful. He wants to know whether his friend, who is a nurse for the last ten years, can recommend any creams or medication that may help to treat his son’s disease. In this situation, I would not prescribe any cream and medication by just visualising the symptom of skin problems. The nurse should always practice according to the legal law in the code of ethics for the registered nurse. According to the Canadian Nurse Association, the nurse does not have the licence to prescribe medicine to the patients (Sofronas, Wright & Carnevale, 2018). As per the Law of Medication in Canada, the nurse is authorised to give education and care to the patients, but prescribing the drug is not permitted. Only the nursing practitioner who has acquired masters or doctorate degree are allowed to prescribe medicine (Rodney & Varcoe, 2016). In spite of recommending medication, I would instead record his medical history, current symptoms and allergic reactions and in consultation with the doctor, I will recommend proper medicine for his recovery. The legal standard of care reflects that to provide a guideline about what a patient should do in the state of illness (Cho et al., 2016). Hence, I will suggest Donna visit a skin specialist for his son treatment rather than taking any medicine. Additionally, according to clinical nursing practice, I will educate Donna regarding ways to manage his son’s skin reaction. As per the ethics, legalities and value in the nursing field, it is my duty to give all the relevant information about the illness and convey the truth to care seekers.

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In the case study, Betty is a practical nurse who wrote about his terrible experience with the patient during her shift in the Facebook page using some derogatory language. For his such mischievous behaviour, she was reported to CLPNA. The major reason behind being reported is that she has violated the principle of ethical and legal issues and used offensive language for patients. Furthermore, she has not maintained the confidentiality and privacy of patient’s information. According to the ethics and values in the clinical nursing practice, it is the duty of the nurse to maintain patient dignity and give respect to their decisions. The nurse is responsible to safeguard the patient’s right to privacy and give respect to their dignity and uniqueness (Hadjistavropoulos et al., 2016). Nurses are not authorised to use any abusive language for the patient. Any invasion of privacy and confidentiality are of critical legal and medical concern (Snelling, 2016). Betty has not shown any respect for the patient and did not handle the case of the patient efficiently. Rather she disclosed all the personal information about the patients and used abusive language, which is forbidden in the law of bioethics in nursing. For her unprofessional behaviour and malpractice, she was reported to the CLPNA.

In the case study, Ms Shaker is undergoing a chronic medical condition, and blood transfusion is the part of her treatment. The nurse name Samantha, who was assigned to care of her have some personal belief and value in connection with the administration of the blood product which is not allowing her to perform her duty with full efficiency. In such a situation, Samantha should convey the linked information to the higher authority and should explain her belief and value regarding blood transfusion. She should request to assign a new nurse for the care of Ms Shaker, who can administer a blood transfusion to her. According to the clinical nursing practice, patient care is of high priority for a nurse; therefore, just because of personal belief and value, care of the patient should be hampered. To give proper care to the patient is the fundamental and legal aspect of nursing. Hence, legally, she was obligated to provide better treatment, which is vital for her survival irrespective of any personal beliefs (Westrick, 2017). For a professional nurse, to maintain the standard of care is necessary for the betterment of the patient. Samantha being a nurse it is her legal right to give quality care to the patient. According to the legal law, the nurse is not required to show negligence in the care of the patient that can cause harm to the patients (Grant, 2017).


  1. Cho, S. H., Lee, J. Y., June, K. J., Hong, K. J., & Kim, Y. (2016). Nurse staffing levels and proportion of hospitals and clinics meeting the legal standard for nurse staffing for 1996~ 2013. Journal of Korean Academy of Nursing Administration, 22(3), 209-219.
  2. Grant, P. D. (2017). Nursing Malpractice/Negligence and Liability. Law for Nurse Leaders, 51.
  3. Hadjistavropoulos, T., Malloy, D. C., Douaud, P., & Smythe, W. E. (2016). Ethical orientation, functional linguistics, and the codes of ethics of the Canadian Nurses Association and the Canadian Medical Association. Canadian Journal of Nursing Research Archive, 34(2).
  4. Kotaska, A. (2017). Informed consent and refusal in obstetrics: A practical ethical guide. Birth, 44(3), 195-199.
  5. Nguyen, T., Henderson, D., Stewart, D., Hlyva, O., Punthakee, Z., & Gorter, J. W. (2016). You never transition alone! Exploring the experiences of youth with chronic health conditions, parents and healthcare providers on self‐management. Child: care, health and development, 42(4), 464-472.
  6. Pesut, B., Greig, M., Thorne, S., Storch, J., Burgess, M., Tishelman, C., … & Janke, R. (2019). Nursing and euthanasia: A narrative review of the nursing ethics literature. Nursing ethics, 0969733019845127.
  7. Rodney, P., & Varcoe, C. (2016). Towards ethical inquiry in the economic evaluation of nursing practice. Canadian Journal of Nursing Research Archive, 33(1).
  8. Snelling, P. C. (2016). The metaethics of nursing codes of ethics and conduct. Nursing Philosophy, 17(4), 229-249.
  9. Sofronas, M., Wright, D. K., & Carnevale, F. A. (2018). Personhood: An evolutionary concept analysis for nursing ethics, theory, practice, and research. In Nursing forum (Vol. 53, No. 4, pp. 406-415).
  10. Westrick, S. J. (2017). Legal and Ethical Accountability for Nursing Errors: Disclosure and Apology.

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Nurse Ethics And Legal Issue. (2022, February 17). Edubirdie. Retrieved August 14, 2022, from
“Nurse Ethics And Legal Issue.” Edubirdie, 17 Feb. 2022,
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