Social media has become an important part of human life for the past few years since it
makes it easier for people to interact. For the nursing profession, social media allows nurses to
have a connection between work and their professional lives. This allows them to discuss issues
that include the advancement of health care and the current medical practices which are
considered best. As with everything, social media comes with its demerits in the nursing
profession. It has led to many nurses losing either their jobs or losing their licenses due to posts
they upload on social media. Therefore, it is crucial to familiarize oneself with some of the social
media actions considered unethical in the nursing profession.
A quick look at my social media activity has resulted in me finding several unethical
items that can deter my nursing career and negatively impact the nursing profession. My several
posts about drug use and the use of sexually explicit language is very unprofessional. The several
negative comments I make about my workplace issues and innocent complaints about my fellow
coworkers can be very harmful. Especially workplace issues, a coworker may raise issues with
the human resource department, which can lead to me losing my job. Some short bursts of anger
should also be avoided since they make one make threatening statements that can negatively
impact one's career.
Conversations we take part in social media can be considered inappropriate according to
professional standards. Let's face it; we all have sexual fetishes, and social media gives us a
platform to talk about them. Although this is a personal issue, it is considered unprofessional,
especially sexually explicit content. My several conversations about the place of employment
and how stressful my workday was is also inappropriate. These negative posts can lead to
disciplinary actions. No matter how honest they are, we should take care on what conversations
we participate in.
Nurses have the responsibility of upholding the standard code of conduct because they
play a significant role in recognizing the trusted role which a nurse plays.( Henderson et al.,
2015) These standards are important in the decision-making process, and they outline the
consequences of making these decisions. They are also important in determining health
dilemmas. A good example is when a patient is rude and hostile to the attending nurse or starts to
sexually harass the attending nurse. This code can help in decision-making on what step they
should take. (Schmitt et al.,2012)Personal conduct can be considered unethical or unprofessional
when the nurse may come to work being drunk or when the nurse talks negatively about the
work environment, employees, and patients. Personal conduct, such as not being able to control
anger bursts, can lead to violation of HIPAA. A good example is when a nurse threw the patient's
file in the dustbin due to her boss being so demanding. Someone would have picked the patient's
medical file and could have made the contents public, which is a gross violation of HIPAA.
One of the critical Christian values is respecting human values and dignity for each and
every person. This can be done by offering compassionate care and respecting the worth and
dignity of all persons. It can also be achieved by keeping a record of all the patients and their
information for future reference. I need to improve my social media activity by rejecting to
converse with old or current patients regarding their medical issues. This can be done by
advising them to consider more secure channels to communicate about their issues. Although
social media gives us a platform to air out our thoughts, it’s a responsibility of us as nurses to
uphold the standards of conduct consistent with the standards governing the profession of
nursing at work.
Henderson, M., & Dahnke, M. D. (2015). The ethical use of social media in nursing
practice. Medsurg Nursing, 24(1), 62.
Schmitt, T. L., Sims-Giddens, S. S., & Booth, R. G. (2012). Social media use in nursing
education. OJIN: The Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, 17(3).
Ventola, C. L. (2014). Social media and health care professionals: benefits, risks, and best
practices. Pharmacy and therapeutics, 39(7), 491.