Starting with the National Student Nurses’ Association (NSNA) Bill of Rights and Responsibilities in the 1970s until the release of the NSNA Core Values by the Board of Directors in 2015, NSNA members have been in the forefront of inspiring moral courage and demonstrating exemplary ethical conduct for almost five decades.
The 2015-16 NSNA Board of Directors took on the challenge of reviewing NSNA’s primary documents related to ethics and found that they all needed a general review by the membership to ensure continued relevance today and in the future.
The current NSNA Code of Ethics combines the three documents into one NSNA Code of Ethics with three distinct parts. The three documents include: The Code of Professional Conduct; the Code of Clinical and Academic Conduct; and the Bill of Rights and Responsibilities for Students of Nursing.
Code of Ethics
National Student Nurses’ Association encourages nursing programs to adopt the Code of Ethics.
LEADERSHIP and AUTONOMY
Definition: A process of social influence which promotes innovative problem solving to move an autonomous, independent organization forward by providing a clear vision, maximizing the efforts of others, by respecting each individual and in collaboration with other appropriate resources.
Interpretive Statement: NSNA promotes each member to build their democratic leadership skills with conflict resolution through shared governance and community, with respect for others. Student nurses in leadership positions of NSNA make their own decisions based on fiduciary research, and historical and current evidence along with membership input when appropriate. NSNA chapter leaders establish and acknowledge their autonomy and independence in bylaws, policies and procedures.
Definition: An act or process of imparting or acquiring general knowledge, developing the powers of reasoning and judgment, and generally of preparing oneself or others intellectually for a profession
Interpretive Statement: NSNA informs, prepares, and inspires members to develop continuous, life-long learning and ethics of the profession. Nursing students are encouraged to take full advantage of their education and develop their professional leadership skills as members of NSNA.
Definition: An activity or process to work on behalf of self and/or others to raise awareness of a concern and to promote solutions to the issue
Interpretive statement: The nursing profession is based on advocating for patients and families in order to help facilitate the healing process; NSNA serves as an advocate for nursing students by representing them as one united voice.
Definition: Characteristics that describe an individual striving to maintain the highest standards for one’s chosen path – honesty, integrity, responsibility and conducting oneself with responsibility, integrity, accountability, and excellence.
Interpretive Statement: As NSNA members, it is important to create a culture of professionalism in our organization and to uphold the values of professionalism in order to conduct ourselves and our organization in the most respectful, honest way. This value translates into respecting our patients and maintaining the ethics of our profession.
Definition: A feeling and exhibiting concern and empathy for others while showing or having compassion for others.
Interpretive Statement: Caring is a fundamental value of registered nurses and the nursing profession. The NSNA cultivates a climate of caring in its publications, programs, relationships, and leadership development. NSNA members care for their patients, peers and the future of the profession.
Definition: Differences that can be along the dimensions of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, age, physical abilities, religious beliefs, political beliefs, nationality or other ideologies.
Interpretive Statement: Each individual is unique, and we recognize our individual differences through acceptance and respect. We explore these differences in a safe, positive and nurturing environment. It is about understanding each other and moving beyond simple tolerance to embracing and celebrating the rich dimensions of diversity contained within each individual.
Adopted in March 2015 by the 2014-15 NSNA Board of Directors.