The nursing practice is founded on professional values and the behaviors associated with them. It is essential to understand the legal, historical, and current nursing practice environment to implement professionalism in this field. Professionalism refers to the ability of a nurse to consistently demonstrate core values when working with others to ensure wellness and optimal health in patients, communities, and families through various principles, including ethics, altruism, caring, accountability, and excellence (Wagner, 2018). This paper reflects professionalism, including professional boundaries, personal respect, and respect for others, appearance, and demeanor.
The outward appearance of a nurse influences how patients and their families perceive nurse’s professionalism level since expertise is seen through appearance, communication, and behavior. Most patients will believe that a nurse is more competent if they are dressed appropriately and wear a clean cut. The professional uniform is the primary identifier for nurses during treatment which helps patients and their families differentiate nurses from healthcare technicians, support team, and physician. In this way, victims and families can identify who to approach when they have concerns. Therefore, nurses and other healthcare professionals must be subjected to a dress code with coordinated colors to make patients’ experience more satisfactory and make it easier for them to communicate with designated staff of their choosing.
Most patients will relate one’s dressing code and general appearance with their abilities and trustworthiness. In that case, if a nurse dresses too casually, the patient may question attention to detail and their professionalism. It is vital that the first impression is positive since it communicates loud about one. It is an indicator of self-respect and feelings (Adams & Miller, 2019). If a nurse projects a positive image, they are communicating to patients that they care about them and create an impression that they can take good care of them. Although the primary concern of a nurse is not portraying a positive image, optimistic image projection helps create a trusting relationship with patients in a society that merits physical appearance.
Respect for self and others is one of the core values of professionalism learned in this course. The concern nurses accord to others and themselves is essential in everyday life of the nursing practice. It is imperative that they respect their colleagues and patients by practicing respect for the worth, inherent dignity, and uniqueness of all the individuals, without considering the nature of their health problems, personal attribute, and economic status. Moreover, nurses should take into account the values and the needs of every person in their professional relationships. With the consciousness of patients’ respect, they should pay attention to patients’ needs, listening to them, asking their opinion, and acknowledging their priorities and the importance of personal value incorporation into treatment decisions. The physical environment nurses create for their patients can reflect the respect they accord to them. Respect for patients can also be shown by ensuring privacy, quiet and clean surroundings.
Respect can also be established by supporting other members working within the health care department. It is inappropriate that a nurse speaks poorly of another healthcare professional since it can undermine patients’ confidence and lower the department’s impression (Elliott, 2019). It is also vital that they give their colleagues the benefit of the doubt and improve interaction with them to maintain respect and consequently enhance a positive relationship. Respecting all individuals within the healthcare organization is critical in improving the ability to take good care of patients since every staff has a value and essential contribution to make.
Since moral respect gives moral dignity and worth to all human beings without regard to life situations and personal attributes, every nurse is also entitled to such consideration. The duties and respect they owe to others they also owe to themselves. They should promote their safety and health, preserve their integrity and character’s wholeness, continually grow personally and professionally, and maintain their competence.
Another important aspect of professionalism learned is maintaining professional boundaries with patients and other caregivers within a health care center. When in nursing practice, one should recognize and establish limitations while observing the required limits to relationships. Nurse-patient and nurse-nurse relationships are paramount in nursing work and fundamental in preventing alleviating suffering, illness, protecting, restoring, and promoting a patient’s health. They should acknowledge that these relationships are different from those that are unstructured and purely personal, such as friendship. Nurses should have a clear understanding of nursing’s intimate environment, the significant involvements, which are sometimes stressful, and the mutual dependence of members of the healthcare department that may limit a healthy professional relationship. A nurse is obligated to express himself/herself as an individual and maintain authenticity while maintaining appropriate boundaries in all encounters. In case professional boundaries are compromised, they are expected to seek assistance from supervisors or peers to resolve the situation.
Professional values are essential in implementing nursing practice in day-to-day life. They ensure that chances of conflict between nurses and patients and other staff are minimized by providing clear guidelines to be followed in every scenario. Guidelines on appearance and demeanor are important in projecting professionalism and creating confidence and trust in a patient. Respect for oneself and others is also crucial in nursing practice since it enhances efficiency in the health care facility and assists in patients’ healing process. Since relationships are critical in improving the health condition, there are established limits to professional relationships’ boundaries
Adams, D., & Miller, B. (2019). Professionalism in nursing behaviors of nurse practitioners. Journal of Professional Nursing, 17(4), 203-210. Web.
Elliott, A. (2019). Identifying professional values in nursing: An integrative review. Teaching and Learning in Nursing, 12(3), 201-206. Web.
Wagner, D. (2018). Promoting professionalism in RN-BSN education. Journal of Nursing Education aAnd Practice, 3(5). Web.