How Using the Term “Non-Compliant” Keeps ProvidersFrom Partnering With Patients

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Abstract

The aim of this article is to offer an alternate perspective for nurses to consider when assigning the label “non-compliant” to a patient. This discussion contains three examples of experiences of people who were designated non-compliant patients, and how they were then thought of as problems, and a fourth example in which the patient's autonomy was respected. The unintended negative consequences of labeling people as non-compliant are examined through the lens of three ethical principles: (a) respect for autonomy, (b) beneficence, and (c) non-maleficence.

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