A standard describes a model of recognized practice that is accepted as correct across the board. Nursing care is regulated by established standards of care. Precisely, standards of practice or care are established guidelines that determine what nurses should and should not do. They serve as a point of reference of achievement that is based on a preferred level of excellence. Standards of care determine the degree of excellence that is required in nursing care. They also describe what entails a competent level or the desired level of nursing care (Feldman & Alexander, 2012). As such, standards of care are meant to be adhered to by all registered nurses. It is of paramount importance for nurses to adhere and comply with these established standards. This paper will show exactly why adherence and compliance to nursing standards of care.
Why it is important for nurses to adhere to guidelines, standards and compliance
Adherence and compliance to nursing standards is of paramount importance to the nursing profession. Firstly, nursing standards outline the expectations of the profession from its members. This is important in the practice of nursing. It tells a registered nurse what the profession expects of her. This way, adherence and compliance with the established standards helps a registered nurse meet her professional obligations (Finkelman & Kenner, 2013).
Secondly, the standards of practice tell the community of the values, conduct and quality of care expected of the nurses. For this reason, a nurse is bound by obligation to serve the community to the highest ideals of excellence. In so doing, the nurse meets the expectations of the community members. Thirdly, the standards and guidelines of care provide health care providers with a framework to aid them in developing competencies. The mastery of theoretical knowledge is one of the characteristics of professionalism. It is also important for professional nurses to use the theoretical knowledge in finding solutions for health problems in the community.
It is also important for nurses to adhere and comply with guidelines and standards because they promote, guide and direct the professional nursing practice. Every profession is regulated by standards with which the players in the profession have to comply. The standards provide a criterion with pre-determined parameters against which different aspects pertaining to quality of nursing care is compared. Therefore, nurses are mandated to adhere to these guidelines and standards in order to uphold the ideals of quality of service expected of the health profession (Funnell, Koutoukidis, Lawrence & Tabbner, 2008).
Nurses must also adhere and comply with outlined guidelines and standards because they aid in developing better relationships and an understanding, respect for the varied complimentary roles and obligations that nurses have. Nurses are part of the health care team in health facilities. This means that their roles are dependent on the other health care providers. The vice versa is also true. The standards and guidelines help ensure that there is a smooth understanding and respect in discharging the complimentary roles. It is for this reason that nurses have to adhere and comply with the stipulated guidelines and standards.
Failure to comply with the guidelines and standards can lead to harm to the patients. This can be litigated under health malpractice. This also gives a bad name to the nursing profession. In order to avoid this, it is important for nurses to adhere and comply with the standards and guidelines laid out in the nursing profession.
Feldman, H. R., & Alexander, G. R. (2012). Nursing leadership: A concise encyclopedia. New York: Springer.
Finkelman, A. W., & Kenner, C. (2013). Professional nursing concepts: Competencies for quality leadership. Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.
Funnell, R., Koutoukidis, G., Lawrence, K., & Tabbner, A. R. (2008). Tabbner's nursing care: Theory and practice. Sydney, N.S.W: Elsevier Churchill Livingstone.