The paradigm of nursing responsibilities has already gone far beyond providing medical assistance to the patients and dealing with documentation related to the treatment. Nowadays, the notion of nursing encompasses direct care provision, allocation of the treatment resources, communication with patients, and collaboration with public health resources in terms of healthcare promotion and policy introduction (Scott et al., 2019). Thus, when nurses face the settings in which their patients are the victims of severe public health issues, it is their explicit responsibility to take action in the public issue addressing and prevention.
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Thus, when analyzing the situation where the patient is a teenage victim of human trafficking and the sex trade, one should emphasize that the first and foremost priority of the nurse is establishing a trusting and efficient relationship with a patient. Afterward, it is also the nurse’s responsibility to address the hazardous consequences of teenage human trafficking to a broad audience. Provision 8 of the nursing code of ethics emphasizes that nurses are to communicate with the public in order to maintain human rights adherence and promotion within society (Fowler, 2015). Thus, a nurse has a moral obligation to reduce the human trafficking case frequency to a maximum extent through the dialogue with community and state authorities.
When faced with a case of a human trafficking victim, a nurse should, first of all, establish proper communication and level of trust with the patient in order to collect relevant information on the issue, not considering highly personal details that should not be shared with others. With the data collected, nurses have the right to address local authorities with the intention to stop violent actions. When supported by the public, the governments will have no choice but to take immediate measures. In the worst-case scenario, when the issue is not raised by the practitioners for more than five years, the possibility to stop the violence will reduce with each case, leading to the investigation’s dead end.
Fowler, M. D. M. (2015). Guide to the code of ethics for nurses with interpretive statements: development, interpretation, and application. American Nurses Association.
Scott, P. A., Harvey, C., Felzmann, H., Suhonen, R., Habermann, M., Halvorsen, K., Christiansen, K., Toffoli, L., & Papastavrou, E. (2019). Resource allocation and rationing in nursing care: a discussion paper. Nursing Ethics, 26(5), 1528-1539.