Liberia – ‘Ethics Protect Nurses, Midwives From Trouble’

— Says Orator Sarteh

The orator at the 49th oath and honoring program of the Winifred J. Harley College of Health Sciences, United Methodist University, had urged the new nurses to always conduct themselves with professional ethics to protect themselves from falling into trouble in the event of unexpected occurrences.

Speaking on the topic, “Ethics in Nursing Practice: A Guide for Quality Service Delivery, patients’ Safety, and Practitioners’ Protection in Clinical Nursing Practice,” Madam Diana T. Sarteh said nurses dedicate their lives to caring for others, promoting health, and alleviating suffering.

“It is crucial to recognize that the provision of healthcare goes beyond just medical knowledge and technical skills,” she said.

“It requires a strong ethical foundation that quiets our actions and decisions,” she said.

Madam Sarteh, who is the Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer, at the Department of Health Services, Ministry of Health, explained that ethics in nursing are not merely a set of rules or guidelines, rather, it is a moral compass that helps nurses to navigate the complex and often challenging situations they encounter in their daily affairs.

“Ethic encompasses five principles, including autonomy, beneficence, non-malfeasance, justice, and veracity, adding, she said, “These principles serve as pillars upon which we build trust with our patients and establish ourselves as advocates for their well-being.”

In autonomy, she stressed the importance of respect for an individual to make informed decisions about their healthcare, something she said in nursing autonomy means actively involving patients in their care plans, respecting their preferences and values, ensuring that they have access to all the necessary information to make informed choices.

“By promoting autonomy, nurses empowered patients to take ownership of their health and actively participate in their treatment decisions.

For the principle of beneficence, she emphasizes the duty of healthcare providers to act in the best interest of their patients, while non-malfeasance highlights the importance of avoiding harm to patients.

The Chief nurse of Liberia added that justice in nursing calls for fairness and equality in healthcare, and veracity and truthfulness are fundamental principles in nursing practice.

At the 49th Oath and Honor program, the Dean of the College Mr. Clinton Zeantoe presented about 137, who he declared qualified for oath and honored.

The honorees joined the rest of the graduates from other departments of the United Methodist University who went through the graduation convocation, held on Tuesday, January 31, 2024.

The Winifred J Harley College of Health Sciences, formerly called the Winifred J. Harley United Methodist School of Nursing, was founded in 1952 by Dr. George Way Harley. The college is located in Ganta, Nimba County.

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