Towards a New Narrative of Moral Distress: Realizing the Potential of Resilience


Cynda Hylton Rushton and Alisa Carse


      Terri Traudt, Joan Liaschenko, and Cynthia Peden-McAlpine’s study contributes to a much-needed reorientation in thinking about and working with the challenges of moral distress. In providing a vital example of nurses able to navigate morally distressing situations in positive and constructive ways, and offering an analysis of the component elements of these nurses’ success, the study helps identify promising directions we might take in addressing the epidemic of moral distress. It also invites important questions, concerning the challenges faced by clinicians who do not who work in healthy “moral communities,” who lack the ethical competencies, and who don’t have the presumptive authority and recognition enjoyed by the seasoned clinicians studied here. We explore some of these questions, and suggest ways we might build on the insights of Traudt and colleagues’ study.



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