Code of Ethics for Nurses in a Correctional Setting: Respect for Human Dignity

Ethical nursing practice can be challenging in any health care setting. This is especially true in a jail or prison where patients are also prisoners or detained for probable cause in a crime. The nature of caring must shift to meet the need of the patient population and environment in correctional nursing practice. This course provides a basis for navigating the murky waters of nursing practice in a correctional setting. This course uses practical case examples to apply the first provision of the Code of Ethics for nurses in correctional practice.

Questions? Check out our FAQs page and How Online IV Certification Works!


 Upon completion of this course, the participant should be able to:

  1. Describe the professional nursing values that underlie the Code for Nurses.
  2. Outline ways to respect human dignity and patient relationship when working with incarcerated patients.
  3. Describe approaches to manage health problems and seek self-determination for incarcerated patients.
  4. Improve your relationship with work colleagues.


Chapter 1: Professional Nursing Values and the Code for Nurses

  • The Nightingale Pledge
  • A Code for Nurses
  • Professional Values embedded in the Code
  • Duty to Self and Others

Chapter 2: Respect for Human Dignity and Patient Relationship

  • Case Study #1 – Human Dignity
    • Acknowledge Your Feelings
    • Work Your Core
    • Know the Rules
    • What Does the Patient Need?
  • Case Study #2 – Patient Relationship
    • More than the Tasks
    • Three Choices
    • How to Show You Care in Corrections
    • More about Caring in Correctional Practice

Chapter 3: The Nature of Health Problems and the Right to Self-Determination

  • Case #3 – The Nature of Health Problems
    • Gift Exchange
    • Shifting Perspective
    • Out of Body Experience
  • Case #4 – Right to Self-Determination
    • The Ethical Principle of Autonomy
    • Autonomy Means Voluntary
    • Autonomy Requires All the Information
    • Self-Determination Can Not Risk the Health of Others
  • Options for Self-Determination

Chapter 4: Relationship with Colleagues

  • Case #5
    • Caring is Not Just for Patients
    • Prevention and Proactivity
    • Relationship Responsibility

Chapter 5: Summary and References

  • California Bill 241
  • Implicit Bias in Healthcare
  • What is Implicit Bias?
  • Implications of Implicit Bias in Healthcare
  • How to Reduce Implicit Bias

Price: $10.00

Contact Hour: 1

Course Author

Lorry Schoenly

Lorry Schoenly, PhD, RN, CCHP-RN is a nurse author and educator specializing in the field of correctional health care. She provides consulting services to jails and prisons across the country on projects to improve professional nursing practice and patient safety. 

Read Full Bio

Course Accreditation

See our Accreditation Statements page to view our accreditation information.

Ready to begin?

Go to the student dashboard.

Not sure what courses you need?

Browse our course catalog!