PROFESSIONAL CODE OF CONDUCT FOR NURSES AND MIDWIVES
(Nurses and Midwives Act No. 31 of 1997)
Nurses and midwives, are personally accountable for their practice and in their exercise of professional accountability, they must:
- Always perform in such a manner as to promote and protect the interests, safety and well-being of clients.
- Ensure that no action or omission on their part or within their sphere of responsibility is harmful to the interest, condition and safety of clients.
- Regularly maintain and update their professional knowledge and competence through education, research and self-motivated learning.
- Acknowledge any limitations in their knowledge and competence and decline any duties or responsibilities unless able to perform them in a safe and skilled manner.
- Work in an open and co-operative manner with clients and their families, foster their independence recognize and respect their involvement in the planning and delivery of care.
- Uphold the principles of leadership, accountability, partnership and sustainability in the delivery of health care recognizing and respecting the contributions of other members of the health care team.
- Recognize and respect the uniqueness and dignity of each client and respond to their need for care, irrespective of their ethnic origin, political affiliation, religious beliefs, gender, traditional beliefs, values and practices, personal attributes and the nature of their health problem or any other factors.
- Report to an appropriate person or authority at the earliest possible time, any objections by the client to any relevant procedures which may be contrary to their professional practice.
- Avoid abuse of their privileged relationship with clients and of their privileged access allowed to them, their property, residence or work place.
- Protect all confidential information concerning the clients obtained in the course of your professional practice and make disclosures only with consent by order of the court, GNC or where they can justify disclosure in the wide public interest.
- Report to an appropriate authority or person, having regard to the physical, psychological and social effect on clients, any circumstances in the environment of care which could jeopardize standard of practice and quality of care.
- Report to an appropriate person or authority where it appears that the health or safety of colleagues is at risk as such circumstances may compromise standards of practice and care.
- Practice within your qualifications, competences, knowledge and experience, and consult and or refer clients for further management.
- Support professional colleagues in the context of their knowledge, experience and sphere of responsibility to develop their professional competence and assist others in the health care team to contribute safely to the provision of quality care to a level appropriate to the roles.
- Refuse any gift, favour or hospitality from clients currently in their care which might be interpreted as bribe, nepotism or seeking to extend influence to obtain preferential considerations.
- Ensure that your professional status is not used to promote commercial product.
- Declare any financial or other interest in relevant organizations providing such goods and services and ensure that their professional judgment is not influenced by any commercial consideration.
- Ensure that the professional research ethics are upheld at all times.
- Uphold the standards of Nursing and Midwifery by maximizing utilization of available resources.
- ADMINISTRATION OF PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT AND DISCIPLINARY CODE
The Professional Code of Conduct shall be administered by the General Nursing Council of Zambia (GNCZ) and all stakeholders.
1.1. Application of the Professional Conduct and Disciplinary Code for Nurses and midwives
i. It is the responsibility of the individual practitioner to acquire a copy of the Professional Conduct and Disciplinary Code from GNCZ.
ii. It is the responsibility of the individual practitioner to ensure that he/she reads and understands the obligations placed upon him/ her through the Professional Code of Conduct for Nurses and Midwives.
i. It is the responsibility of the employer to acquire a copy of the Professional Conduct and Disciplinary Code from the General Nursing Council of Zambia.
ii. Each employer is responsible to ensure that the Professional Conduct and Disciplinary Code is understood by all nurses and midwives including the stakeholders.
iii. It is the responsibility of the employer to provide an enabling environment for nurses and midwives to uphold the Professional Conduct and Disciplinary Code
iv. It is the responsibility of each employer to ensure that they have in place a mechanism for implementing the Professional Conduct and Disciplinary Code
i. The rights of the consumer shall be respected in the delivery of care through the Professional Conduct and Disciplinary Code
D. Breach of the Professional Conduct and Disciplinary code
i. Breach of the Professional Conduct and Disciplinary Code will warrant disciplinary action being taken against the offender as outlined in the Disciplinary Code
i. Any nurse/midwife who has any grievance regarding the application of Professional Code of Conduct can, after following the laid down procedures of the institution, complain in writing to the Registrar of the Council.
2. DISCIPLINARY CODE FOR NURSES AND MIDWIVES
|1ST BREACH||2ND BREACH||3RD BREACH|
|2.1. Nursing qualification||a) Falsely claiming nursing qualifications
|Forging any document purporting to be a nursing and or midwifery professional certificate
|b) Obtaining nursing qualifications by fraud
|Registration by fraud||Erasure|
|Concealment of material facts||Erasure|
|Make or cause unauthorized entry, alteration or erasure in a register or any other certified copy of any entry, register or certificate||Erasure|
|2.2. issuance of license||a) Making or giving any false statement or information in connection with the application for issuing a practicing licence||False representation of facts||Erasure|
|Concealment of material facts
|Makes unauthorized entry, alteration or erasure in a register or any other certified copy of any entry, register or certificate||Erasure|
|Causes to be made unauthorized entry, alteration or erasure in a register or any other certified copy of any entry, register or certificate||Erasure|
|2.3. Impersonation||a) Impersonating another licensed nurse, midwife or specialist or permitting another person to use practitioner’s certificate.||Use of a badge or uniform of a person registered under this Act||Caution||Erasure|
|Permitting another person to use practitioner’s certificate||Erasure|
|Masquerading to be any other professional other than that of a nurse and or midwife.||Caution||Erasure|
|2.4. Nursing Practice
|Inability to perform required nursing and/or midwifery procedures according to the level of training||Censure||Caution||Erasure|
|Administering of overdose / under-dose of drug(s)||Caution||Erasure|
|Failure to supervise personnel to whom nursing and/ or midwifery tasks were delegated.||Censure||Caution||Erasure|
|Failure to refer patient to appropriate practitioner.||Caution||Erasure|
|Giving improper explanation to a patient relating to an operation or procedure||Censure||Caution||Erasure|
|Failure to observe patient’s condition and respond appropriately||Caution||Erasure|
|Failure to implement the curricula according to guidelines||Censure||Caution||Erasure|
|Failure to maintain set standards of education in Training Institution||Censure||Caution||Erasure|
|Failure to carry out prescribed instructions and/or administer care||Caution||Erasure|
|Failure to document care provided||Caution||Erasure|
|Poorly documented care given||Censure||Caution||Erasure|
|Failure to provide safe and clean patient’s environment||Censure||Caution||Erasure|
|Failure to interpret patient assessment and/or observation findings||Caution||Erasure|
|Wrong drug administration||Caution||Erasure||
|Failure or refusal to refer patient to appropriate practitioner on time||caution||erasure|
|Failure or refusal to observe patient’s condition and respond appropriately||caution||erasure|
|Failure or refusal to implement the curricula according to guidelines||caution||erasure|
|Failure or refusal to maintain set standards of education in Training Institution||caution||erasure|
|Enrolling a student into training institution without stipulated qualifications||caution||erasure|
|Failure or refusal to supervise personnel to whom nursing and midwifery tasks were delegated||censure||caution||erasure|
|Failure or refusal to carry out prescribed instructions and administer care||caution||erasure|
|Failure or refusal to document care provided||censure||caution||erasure|
|Failure or refusal to provide safe and clean patient’s environment||censure||caution||erasure|
|Failure or refusal to take care of client property resulting into loss||censure||caution||erasure|
|Failure or refusal to adequately assess and/or observe the patient||caution||erasure|
|Use of cell phones and/or ear piece while attending to clients||censure||caution||erasure|
|Delegating to unqualified personnel||caution||erasure|
|c) Giving improper explanation to a patient relating to a major operation||Giving improper explanation to a patient relating to a major operation or procedure||censure||caution||erasure|
|d) Divulging professional confidence||Leakage of confidential information relating to the profession.||caution||erasure|
|Breach of confidentiality pertaining to patient’s welfare||caution||erasure|
|Releasing information pertaining to the profession without following established channels of communication||Caution||Erasure||erasure|
|Malicious and/or public accusation by a practitioner against a fellow practitioner||Caution||Erasure||erasure|
|e) Unprofessional behaviors bringing the professional integrity in disrepute||Consuming alcohol while in prescribed uniform||Caution.||Erasure||erasure|
|Fighting, beating or disorderly behavior on or off duty||censure||caution||erasure|
|Accepting and soliciting gift(s) from a client with a view to providing preferential treatment||caution||erasure|
|Failure to be in prescribed uniform while on duty||Caution||Erasure|
|f) Procuring, aiding, attempting, agreeing or offering to procure or assist at a criminal abortion||Procuring a criminal abortion||erasure|
|Aiding a criminal abortion||erasure|
|Attempting a criminal abortion||erasure|
|Agreeing to a criminal abortion||Erasure|
|Offering to procure a criminal abortion||erasure|
|Assist at a criminal abortion||Erasure|
|2.5. Use of alcohol||a) Practicing under the influence of alcohol||Practicing under the influence of alcohol
|Drunkenness on duty||Erasure|
|2.6. Practicing without a license||a) Practicing without a license
|Practicing without a license||caution||erasure|
|2.7. Advertisement||a) Advertising a Practitioner’s services||Posting on social media one’s image in prescribed uniform for the purpose of advertising one’s services||censure||caution||erasure
|Posting on social media client’s picture without patient’s permission||caution||erasure|
|Participating in a commercial advert without permission from GNC||caution||erasure|
|2.8. Press statement||a) Issuing unauthorized press statement||Issuing unauthorized press statement with regards to the profession and clients.||caution||erasure|
|2.9. Drug acts or omission||a) The preparation, consumption or self-administration of any drug included in the Dangerous Drug Acts or listed under the Schedule of the Pharmacy and Poisons Act||The preparation of any drug included in the Controlled Drug Acts or listed under the Schedule of the Pharmacy and Poisons Act or any other such laws as may be amended from time to time||caution||erasure|
|Consumption of any drug included in the Controlled Drug Acts or listed under the Schedule of the Pharmacy and Poisons Act or any other such laws as may be amended from time to time.||caution||erasure|
|Self-administration of any drug included in the Controlled Drug Acts or listed under the Schedule of the Pharmacy and Poisons Act or any other such laws as may be amended from time to time||caution||erasure|
|The preparation, consumption or administration of any drug included in the Controlled Drug Acts or listed under the Schedule of the Pharmacy and Poisons Act or such other laws on another person without prescription||Erasure|
|2.10. Drug acts or omission||a) Use of cannabis||Use of cannabis||caution||erasure|
|2.11. Drug acts or omission||a) Alcoholism||Alcoholism||caution||erasure|
|2.12. Patient abuse
|a) Negligence – causing death or deformity||Negligence – causing death or deformity||erasure|
|b) Negligence – in the giving of prescribed drug treatments
|Negligence – in the giving of prescribed drug treatments||caution||erasure|
|c) Abuse of patients physically, mentally or sexually||Abuse of patients physically||erasure|
|Abuse of patients mentally||Caution||erasure|
|Abuse of patients sexually||erasure|
|Violation of patient’s / client’s rights||caution||erasure|
|d) Failure or refusing to offer assistance to a patient||Failure or refusing to offer professional assistance to a patient||caution||erasure|
|Assigning nursing and/or midwifery duties to patients and/or support person(s) who have no ability or knowledge and skill to perform such duties||Caution||Erasure||erasure|
|2.13. Theft and other dishonesty Acts||a) Theft of hospital property||Theft of hospital property||erasure|
|b) Other theft||Other theft||erasure|
|c) Other Dishonesty Acts||Offer of and /or acceptance of bribes and other favour||caution||erasure|
|Nepotism: Exerting your influence to favour a category of clients, colleagues, religious or political group||censure||caution||erasure|
|Corrupt practices by a nurse and/or midwife||erasure|
|Plagiarism – use of another person’s works e.g. GNC documents without giving appropriate credit||caution||erasure|
|Use of one’s professional status for unlawful gain.||caution||erasure|
|Use of one’s professional status to gain sexual advantage over student nurses and/or midwives||caution||erasure|
|Practicing outside the scope of nursing and midwifery practice||censure||caution||erasure|
|Examination malpractice as provided for in SI 92, Regulation 4 (4)||erasure|
|2.14. Proceedings in the courts of Law||a) Publish or disclose to unauthorized person information relating to the Council that comes to your knowledge in the course of your duties without the written consent given by or on behalf of the council||Publish or disclosure to unauthorized person information relating to the Council that comes to your knowledge in the course of your duties without the written consent given by or on behalf of the Council||Erasure|
|b) Proceedings in the courts of Law||Being found guilty of Infamous conduct by the proceedings in the court of law||Erasure|
All appeals should be to the high Court within thirty (30) days from the date of receipt of the Council’s verdict (disciplinary action).