Nursing Ethics: Truth Telling Is Bad News


  • Suphakit Krueaklat -
  • Wipada Pongjit


Truth telling is bad news, Nursing ethics, Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)


 Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is a highly contagious disease that can be transmitted through
contact with blood and secretions. In Thai, HIV is a socially unacceptable disease that makes patients feel
embarrassed and stigmatized. HIV is therefore considered a form of truth telling is bad news.
Telling the truth about HIV patients is going to be a doctor's role. However, nurses have to be involved
in acknowledging the feelings of patients, relatives, and providing comfort and generosity to alleviate concerns.
In telling the truth, the suitability of the patient as the recipient of the information. This includes emotional state,
environment, time period, beliefs and culture were considered to prevent discouragement, despair, and
non-cooperative treatment. Today, guidelines for nursing practices integrate ethical practices. But ethics is a
small complement and not clear. However, ethical practices must rely on ethical knowledge as the basis for
development. Therefore, in order for the nursing practice to be of the highest quality and benefit the clients,
it is necessary to have ethical guidelines.
This chapter presents an example of the Nursing Council's ethical practice for nurses in patient care
about telling the truth that is bad news. This is the use of ethical knowledge to develop guidelines can be applied
to be specific and appropriate to the patient. Alternatively, these ethical guidelines may be integrated with
clinical nursing practice guidelines.


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How to Cite

Krueaklat, S., & Pongjit, W. (2022). Nursing Ethics: Truth Telling Is Bad News. NU Journal of Nursing and Health Sciences, 16(2), 1–14. Retrieved from