Social media plays a significant role in the lives of nurses in both their professional and personal lives. Additionally, social media is now considered a mainstream part of the process for recruiting and hiring candidates. Inappropriate or unethical conduct on social media can create legal problems for nurses as well as the field of nursing.
Login to all social media sites in which you engage. Review your profile, pictures and posts. Based on the professional standards of nursing, identify items that would be considered unprofessional and potentially detrimental to your career and that negatively impact the reputation of the nursing field.
In 500-750 words, summarize the findings of your review. Include the following:
- Describe the posts or conversations in which you have engaged that might be considered inappropriate based on the professional standards of nursing.
- Discuss why nurses have a responsibility to uphold a standard of conduct consistent with the standards governing the profession of nursing at work and in their personal lives. Include discussion of how personal conduct can violate HIPAA or be considered unethical or unprofessional. Provide an example of each to support your answer.
- Based on the analysis of your social media, discuss what areas of your social media activity reflect Christian values as they relate to respecting human value and dignity for all individuals. Describe areas of your social media activity that could be improved.
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Expert Answer and Explanation
Professionalism and Social Media
My Posts on Social Media That Were Inappropriate Based on the Professional Standards of Nursing
Social media has been dominant in every profession, and nursing is no exception (Ross & Myers, 2017). Nurses use social media to connect their professional and personal lives, as it facilitates conversations on current best practices and healthcare advances in nursing. However, posting unprofessional behavior can ruin the career of a nurse. Some years back, I started a conversation on Facebook where I posted information about the patients under my care. The facility was not impressed, and I was almost suspended from work. The patient had an acute illness, and my only intention in the post was to highlight some of the efforts that nurses were making to enhance vital care outcomes.
Several months after that incident, I criticized a nurse in a Facebook conversation, who had posted how people can avoid lifestyle diseases. My comments made the nurse feel offended since I did not show professional ethics. I realized that I should not have criticized the efforts she was making to educate people on best practices, which are easy to implement to remain healthy. I later apologized for my actions, but the damage was already done. Those comments almost ruined my relationship with other professionals in nursing.
Reasons Why Nurses Must Uphold Professional Standards of Conduct
A nurse at all times should comply with the requirements that govern the profession due to the sensitivity of their work. Nurses have a duty to self and others, and they promote health and safety so that patients can learn of the means that can improve their health and those that can put it in jeopardy (Hess, 2020). Integrity is mandatory for nurses to win the confidence of patients. A nurse should not criticize the work of others aimed at helping improve the health of the community on any platform used. Nurses should also adhere to a high level of competence and teamwork for professional growth.
How Personal Conduct of a Nurse can Violate HIPAA Guidelines
A nurse’s conduct on social media can profoundly violate the standards set by The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) through things such as exposure of the privacy of patients. According to HIPAA, failure of a nurse to maintain high morality levels could lower the confidence that patients have with nurses and can affect their professions (Smith & Knudson, 2016).
Examples Supporting the Guidelines of HIPAA Guidelines
A nurse should never engage in sexual relations with patients as it indicates low values. HIPAA demands that nurses engage in open communication with colleagues to share ideas on improving services to the patients (Cannon & Caldwell, 2016). A nurse is accepted to also enlighten the community on proper diet and wellness to manage health issues.
Areas of My Social Media Activities That Show Christian Values and How They Relate To Dignity and Respecting Human Values for All Individuals
I believe that all people are equal according to the teachings of the Bible. I give everyone who needs my help the attention they deserve without considering their social status. In some of my posts, I have pictures of myself offering voluntary services to underprivileged communities.
In my social media posts and comments, I ensure that I do not have information that despises any group of people. I do not make negative comments because of the physical attributes of other individuals. Such actions have made me promote human dignity by showing the need to appreciate social value (Hess, 2020).
How to Improve My Social Media Activities
I have realized that I need to improve how I respond to posts on social media by other people. I need to be analytical when giving comments to avoid injuring others’ feelings, who are making efforts to help the community, and protecting my professional standing. I should be cautious and observe how reckless information in social media can affect the lives of others and ruin their professions.
Cannon, A. A., & Caldwell, H. (2016). HIPA5A violations among nursing students: teachable moment or terminal mistake—a case study. J Nurs Educ Pract, 6(12), 41-48.
Hess, M. E. (2020). Belief in media: cultural perspectives on media and Christianity. Routledge.
Ross, J. G., & Myers, S. M. (2017). The current use of social media in undergraduate nursing education: a review of the literature. CIN: Computers, Informatics, Nursing, 35(7), 338-344.
Smith, G. C., & Knudson, T. K. (2016). Student nurses’ unethical behavior, social media, and year of birth. Nursing Ethics, 23(8), 910-918.
Write a fully developed and detailed APA essay addressing each of the following points/questions. There is no required word count; be sure to completely answer all the questions for each question in detail.