The nursing occupation is considered among those sciences which have had and will also have numerous ethical and exemplary aspects. The results of the studies performed regarding ethics indicate the weak nature of the nurses’ ethical decision making. Therefore, it was felt that there is a need to perform a study aiming at the ethical sensitivity level in decision making of the nurses working in training hospitals belonging to Zahedan medical sciences universities. The current study is a descriptive-analytical research performed on 140 nurses who were selected based on a randomized clustering method. To collect the information there was made use of a questionnaire comprising of two parts, the first part of which is related to the demographic characteristics and the second part pertains to a standard questionnaire of nurses’ ethical sensitivity in decision making. Finally after the questionnaires were collected they were analyzed by the use of SPSS 19 and descriptive statistics, Pierson correlation test, variance analysis and independent t-test. Nurses’ average age was 28.56 ± 6.48 and o f the total population 123 individuals were women of whom 68 people had participated in ethics seminars and 53 ofthem were single. The overall ethical sensitivity mean among the nurses was 59.82 ± 17.50 which was ranked as in termediate according to the classification of the questionnaire, and in each of the dimensions of the ethical sensitivity the following scores were obtained respectively, in respect for the help-seeker independence the score was 10.71 ± 4.00,
in the dimension if ethical problems and challenges the score obtained was 11.35 ± 4.21, in the dimens ion of application of the ethical concepts in decision making the score was 12.49 ± 3.82 and in the dimension of honesty and benevolence the obtained score was 4.73 ± 1.70, the professional knowledge dimension scored 13.49 ± 4.50 and the dimension of awareness of the nurses’ treating style of the patients had a score equal to 7.04 ± 2 .47. The relationship between the marital status, age and having passed the ethical courses with the ethical sensitivity in decision making and each of its dimensions was not statistically significant (P>0.05). But, the relationship between gender and work history with the ethical sensitivity was statistically significant. The results obtained in the present study indicated that the nurses’ ethical sensitivity was in an intermediate level. So there is a need for helping the nurses enhance their ethical sensitivity via appropriate planning and providing them with proper programs and also there is a need for further research regarding the ethical sensitivity in order for the flaws and disadvantages to be analyzed and a convenient solution can be introduced.
Keywords: ethical sensitivity, ethical decision making, nurses