Professional Issues

Moral Distress: A Consequence of Caring

Agnes Shepard

compassion, self care
CJON 2010, 14(1), 25-27. DOI: 10.1188/10.CJON.25-27

With the increase of technology in health care, oncology nurses often are involved in ethical discussions regarding the best use of aggressive interventions for patients. Conflicts between ethical principles and external forces can produce moral distress for oncology nurses caring for people with cancer. Moral distress can impact nurses in significant ways, including mental health and job satisfaction, and may impact care delivery. This article reviews the concept of moral distress and suggests interventions and future research to minimize its impact on nurses and patients.

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