David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Nursing Ethics 19 (3):341-356 (2012)
The purpose of this qualitative study was to analyse nurses’ professional dignity in their everyday working lives. We explored the factors that affect nursing professional dignity in practice that emerge in relationships with health professionals, among clinical nurses working in hospitals and in community settings in central Italy. The main themes identified were: (i) nursing professional dignity perceived as an achievement; (ii) recognition of dignity beyond professional roles. These two concepts are interconnected. This study provides insights into professional dignity in nursing being perceived as an achievement linked to the intrinsic dignity of every human being. The ‘nursing professional dignity perceived as an achievement’ was perceived as having declined in different social factors. Some factors of nursing professional dignity perceived as an achievement were attained more easily in community settings. ‘Recognition of dignity beyond professional roles’ underpins the intrinsic dignity as an expression of humanity, embedded in persons regardless of any profession, and values, such as: respect, moral integrity, humility, working conscientiously and kindness
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