Perceptions of Moral Integrity: Contradictions in Need of Explanation
Nursing ethics 2011 May; 18(3): 431-40
The incidence of moral distress, compromised moral integrity, and leaving nursing is highest among nurses new to the profession. Understanding perceptions of moral integrity may assist in developing strategies to reduce distress and promote workforce retention. The purpose of this study was to determine how newly graduated baccalaureate prepared nurses perceive moral integrity and how prepared they feel to manage challenges to it. The design was qualitative descriptive using a confidential short answer online survey. Data were analyzed using conventional content analysis. Moral integrity was perceived as acting like, becoming, and being a certain kind of person who was honest, trustworthy, consistently doing and standing up for what is right, despite the consequences but also expected to set aside their values and beliefs and do what others ask, even if this would mean acting contrary to their conscience. The contradiction within this perception needs explanation.
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