Integrity refers to the preservation of consistent values in a system. In the field of ethics, the term refers to accuracy/ truthfulness and honesty regarding the actions an individual engages in. The opposite of integrity is hypocrisy. Internal consistency is regarded as a virtue.
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Professionals must be able to work in various systems, and at the same time, maintain their integrity in different professional practice and ethical challenges that they might experience. Irrespective of the nature of work or career that an individual engages in, professionals should be equipped with varying skills to deal with professional practice and ethical concerns, which are related to the specific system. This paper aims at discussing the various ways through which integrity can be retained when an individual is working within the boundaries and complexities of multiple systems. Moreover, the most significant professional practice and ethical issues that the individual might encounter will be discussed.
Retaining Integrity within the Boundaries and Complexities of a System
In the health care system, there have been immense efforts aimed at improving the safety and quality of healthcare. However, there is a lot that needs to be done to get rid of preventable harm in healthcare systems (Miller, Rosenstein & DeRenzo, 1998). In this regard, a fair and stable culture is one of the critical components of this improvement. Protective infrastructures are vital in ensuring that safety and quality are safeguarded in healthcare. Reporting integrity is the only component in healthcare that can help in preventing and identifying the fundamental causes of systemic trials, which impends patient safety.
The escalated utilization of new fiscal simulations that relate the impacts of quality to pay will result in the achievement of quality results. Quality healthcare is one of the reasons why professionals are keen on integrity. Healthcare system leaders need to put in place protective structures, which result in accountability in various issues. According to Miller, Rosenstein, and DeRenzo (1998), accountability and transparency are essential during data collection, safety and quality analysis, and financial concerns.
Integrity in the healthcare system involves various areas. These include risk management, administration consultation, corporate compliance, information management systems, financial and accounting services, operational analysis, marketing consultation, information systems, internal control systems, cost reporting, payroll processing, and labor relations. The majority of the challenges in the healthcare system are as a result of untrue medical messaging. As a result, people with good intentions may end up engaging in unethical acts. However, the majority of the challenges is as a result of the failure of staff to be accountable. To ensure integrity in the health system, excuses, pretending, hiding, and games should be avoided (Fisher, 2009).
In the absence of academic integrity norms, the sustenance and stability in the academic system cannot be maintained. According to educators, going against the academic integrity norms is both unethical and disregards education objectives. By going against the academic integrity norms, students cannot develop independent critical thinking skills. Students also consider cheating as immoral. However, cheating is so prevalent in the majority of education systems (Corey, Corey & Callanan, 2011).
Educators should inform students of the negative impacts associated with cheating. This ensures that students are aware of the risk they are exposing themselves to by cheating so that they avoid it at all costs. Through academic cheating, students fail to develop essential critical thinking skills. Moreover, cheating becomes a norm, and students never revise for their exams. On the contrary, they concentrate on writing short notes to be used in the exam room. This leads to a corrupt academic system, where students develop a cheating culture.
Significant Ethical and Professional Practice Issues
It is worth pointing out that with the increase of concerns aimed at developing a culture of safe healthcare systems, there has been immense intimidation and retaliation reports directed towards staff, who voice the inadequacies in healthcare quality and safety. In the healthcare environment, some specialists admit that they have no courage in expressing the circumstances that can negatively impact on patients’ health. Healthcare professionals whose responsibility is ensuring quality and safety experience a wide array of challenges. These include immense pressure, harassment, and legal issues. In the academic system, innocent students seated next to cheating students may also be considered as culprits (Corey, Corey & Callanan, 2011). The punishment for cheating in class and exams include being expelled for good, or results cancellation. This makes students delay completing their education. Also, teachers who identify cheating students may be considered incompetent by the administration. The authorities may think that these teachers are failures for being unable to control their class. Consequently, such teachers may be expelled from the institution. Also, when several students from different classes are caught cheating, the administration may lose the trust of the exam results presented to them.
In essence, professionals undergo through various challenges in their quest to maintain integrity. However, honesty is vital in every system, as it results in the effective achievement of the objectives and goals.
Corey, G., Corey, M. S., & Callanan, P. (2011). Issues and ethics in the helping professions (8th ed.). Belmont, CA: Thomson Brooks/Cole.
Fisher, C.B. (2009). Decoding the ethics code: A practical guide for psychologists (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Miller, F. G., Rosenstein, D. L., & DeRenzo, E. G. (1998). Professional integrity in clinical research. JAMA: the journal of the American Medical Association, 280(16), 1449-1454.