Planned Change in the Nursing Unit

Published: 2022-03-31
Planned Change in the Nursing Unit
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Ethics Nursing management
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 1060 words
9 min read

The nursing unit in the recent past has been experiencing numerous cases of unethical behavior among a few nurses. Most of the cases have majorly been related to patient privacy violation and practices (Aronovitz, 2001). Over the recent past, some patients raised a complaint about their records being released to the public without their consent. Illustratively, a woman had come for an abortion, and she expected that the matter would be handled with utmost confidentiality. Shockingly, she later learned that the nurse who was attending to her had revealed the information to one of her colleagues who were familiar with the patient. The report was later leaked to the public, hence grossly affecting the privacy the patient. About the provision of medical services, it is very unethical for a medical practitioner to reveal the information of a patient to the public, even to their colleagues who might be connected to the patient in any way. The nurse acted contrary to the guidelines that require nurses to protect the confidential information of their patients, and if at all they have to be revealed to the public, a court order must be sought. Additionally, medical practitioners must offer comfort, safety and treatment ways that guarantee the high confidentiality of the patients' data (Darvey, 2008). In addition to leakage of patient information to the public, the nursing unit has also been riddled with cases of improper provision of medical instructions to patients on discharge. It is very unethical for a nurse to give a patient wrong guidance on medication.

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Such behaviors within a nursing unit can be addressed by subjecting nurses to proper training, seminars and allowing them to enroll for studies that would improve their relationship with the patients. Strict laws should also be put in place to guide the behaviors of nurses when handling patients. A written code of conducts provides the nurses and other staff members with an overview of the type of practices that the medical facility expects (Lachman, 2008). It outlines the actions that are unacceptable and the necessary measures that would be taken for those who violate the code of conduct.

The changes within the nursing unit would align to the organization's mission and values since they would enable the nurses to adhere to the standards set, hence creating an environment where all the decisions made by the nurses are by the set code of conduct. The changes would also enhance improvement in primary concern of healthcare. The set standards would promote better health care by eliminating unethical behaviors and other errors that the nurses might commit (Durgin & Hanan, 2004). Since research heavily relies on ethical principles, the changes within the nursing unit would also play an integral role in determining the types of research that should be conducted on the conditions of patients without infringing their privacy. The changes would also ensure that the right professional standards are upheld. The modification of the management of the unit would create an environment where all decision-making fare by the traditional set of principles to follow and ethical dilemma is minimized since the guidelines of actions are in place (Iglesias, 2012).

In planning for the change, the medical facility will adopt Lewin's three-stage model of evolution. The model has three steps, namely unfreezing, changing and refreezing (Cummings, Bridgman, & Brown, 2015). The model selected is suitable for the change process since it captures all the necessary modifications and steps that should be effected in the unit. The changes to be made must go through the unfreezing process before implementation. During the process, awareness is created of how the status quo is affecting the operation of the medical facility. The unethical behaviors must be carefully examined to show employees the importance of the change to the organization. Communication plays an integral role during this stage of transition since nurses have to be informed about the imminent change, the logic behind it and its benefit to the hospital. During the changing phase, the organization transitions into the necessary state of being. The nurses are given more training, the new rules are implemented, and nurses are encouraged to attend seminars that emphasize the importance of moral order in a medical institution. The last stage is the refreezing state that entails reinforcement, stabilization, and solidification of the new state after the change (Cummings, Bridgman, & Brown, 2015). Once the changes have been effected and the organization resumes its normal operation, the new status quo is maintained, and the nurses must ensure that they uphold the required ethical standards of the medical facility. The new state is typically reinforced by positive rewards and acknowledgment of the nurses who maintain the best standards of operation within the hospital.

The manager would be the one responsible for overseeing that the changes are implemented. The manager must possess technical, human and conceptual skills to initiate a successful transition. The manager must be able to understand and be analytical of the change process. They must also be able to be aware of their attitudes, assumptions, and beliefs about the nurses, and they must be able to see the usefulness and limitations of such feelings. Some of the conceptual skills that the manager must also possess are the ability to recognize how various functions of the hospital relate to one another, and how the change in the nursing unit will affect other sectors of the hospital. The knowledge of such relationships and understanding the significance of the elements of the situation enables the manager to act in a way that advances the change of the institution.


Aronovitz, L. (2001). Health Privacy Regulation Enhances Protection of Patient Records but Raises Practical Concerns. Best Practices. doi:10.1201/9781420000177.ch39

Cummings, S., Bridgman, T., & Brown, K. G. (2015). Unfreezing change as three steps: Rethinking Kurt Lewin's legacy for change management. Human Relations, 69(1), 33-60. doi:10.1177/0018726715577707

Darvey DL. 2008. The Legal Handbook for Pharmacy Technicians. Diane ASHP.

Durgin J. & Hanan. 2008. Pharmacy Practice for Technicians. Cengage Learning.

Iglesias, J. L. (2012). Transformational Leadership Ethical Dilemma: To Comply or Not to Comply with Organization's Unethical Practices. SSRN Electronic Journal. doi:10.2139/ssrn.2334391

Lachman, V. D. (2008). Making ethical choices. Nursing, 38(10), 42-46. doi: 10.1097/01.nurse.0000337235.95076.93

Legal Handbook for Pharmacy TechniciansLegal Handbook for Pharmacy Technicians By DarveyDianne L PharmD JD. Published by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Bethesda, MD, 2008. ISBN 978-1-58528-159-6. Paperbound, viii + 150 pp. (22.5 15 cm), $32. Members $29. (2008). Journal of Pharmacy Technology, 24(5), 314-315. doi:10.1177/875512250802400518

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