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The Moral Work of Nursing

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by Hazel Magnussen

Reviewing and integrating lived experiences in nursing with theory and research, The Moral Work of Nursing is a blend of life story and overview of factors affecting ethical nursing practice during the past 50 years. Reflecting on her 35-year nursing career, studies in health care ethics in the 1980s and recent developments in Canadian health care, Magnussen invites readers to ponder moral questions about the work of nurses in community, hospital and long term care settings.

Nurses’ moral work requires reflection on practice, sensitivity to moral issues, courage to ask questions and take action when patientcare is compromised. When concerns are not taken seriously, and systemic or other constraints make it difficult or impossible to act morally, nurses experience moral distress. They are torn between their professional commitment to safe, competent, compassionate and ethical care for patients/clients, and their personal responsibility to remain healthy and fit to practice in ever-changing health care environments.

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  1. Promontory Press

    Nursing is without a doubt an incredibly stressful and difficult job, even outside of work hours. This book does a great job of putting this work in perspective and reflecting on the challenges that nurses face.

    – Talya Jesperson, Goodreads Reviewer

  2. Promontory Press

    Throughout her unique and insightful book, Ms. Magnussen weaves a compelling narrative of her own history studying, practicing and living ethical practice in nursing and health care. Alongside her personal historical narrative are her astute analytic commentaries on how nursing and health care have evolved to the present day…. Historians of nursing and health care will also appreciate Ms. Magnussen’s unique experiences and vantage points.

    – Dr. Patricia (Paddy) Rodney, Associate Professor, School of Nursing, UBC

  3. Promontory Press

    Skillful use of the scholarly literature and the clear eloquent prose make this book both highly readable and a valuable resource for educating nurses about the ethical issues facing the nursing profession, health care and society.

    – Dr. Anita E. Molzahn, Professor and Dean, Faculty of Nursing, University of Alberta

  4. Promontory Press

    An excellent read [written] by a nurse who, after a lifetime of experience, still retains the idealism that drew her into nursing in the first place.

    – BCNU Update Magazine, July-August, 2014

  5. Promontory Press

    While this book is geared towards a more academic audience, as well as professional nurses, the general public may also find it an interesting glimpse at some of the considerations that nurses struggle within our health care system.

    – Jennifer Seper, Librarian, Vancouver Island Regional Library

  6. Promontory Press

    A must read for anyone who wants the “inside on” Nursing. No other book has validated so well what I have experienced over my 40-year Nursing career.

    – Donna Salzar RN, Wellness Nurse, The Ashbourne

  7. Promontory Press

    In this updated edition of The Moral Work of Nursing, Hazel Magnussen has insightfully captured many complex issues in nursing practice. Her own narratives and historical insights are augmented with current research findings about issues that are of concern to nurses today.

    – Anita E. Molzahn, PhD, RN, FCAHS, Professor and Dean, Faculty of Nursing, University of Alberta

  8. Promontory Press

    Hazel Magnussen skillfully weaves her personal story with social history and nursing literature to situate nursing as moral work. This book would be particularly useful in introduction to nursing courses, nursing ethics courses and history courses focusing on social issues in nursing.

    – Stephanie Buckingham, RN, BSN, Retired Nurse Educator, Nanaimo, BC

  9. Promontory Press

    A fantastic book that I read in two reads because I just could not put it down! Author Hazel Magnussen captures the reader’s attention and encourages reflection about difficult subjects in nursing.

    – Carol Rocker PhD, RN, Lecturer University of Victoria and Staff Nurse.

  10. Promontory Press

    “At a time when it is increasingly important for us to reflect on and defend the values that ought to inform Canadian health care and nursing practice, Magnussen’s book is a treasure.” From foreword written by Patricia Rodney RN, MSN, PhD, Associate Professor, University of British Columbia

    – School of Nursing, Faculty Associate, UBC W.Maurice Young Centre for Applied Ethics

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