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Law and Ethics in Nursing and Healthcare

Law and Ethics in Nursing and Healthcare
An Introduction

352 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd

An invaluable support for learning throughout all levels of training, this book introduces the key legal, ethical and professional principles guiding nursing and healthcare practice.

Illustrating clearly how legal and ethical principles interplay and inform professional development, Graham Avery focuses directly on the vital areas – such as negligence, consent, confidentiality, and professional conduct - that healthcare students and practitioners need to understand in order to practice safely and ethically.

Adopting a very practical, accessible approach, central themes and arguments are highlighted with real and fictional case studies which will help readers connect the often 'dry' topics of law and ethics to their own work with patients. End-of-chapter exercises also serve to encourage critical thinking and to challenge opinion.

With further chapters covering more specific areas such as mental health law, end-of-life decisions, and children's law, this will be an indispensable resource for all nursing and healthcare students and practitioners.

The English Legal System
An Introduction to Healthcare Ethics
Resource Allocation
Mental Health
Professional Conduct
End of Life Decisions


This book embraces the dynamic and constantly changing nature of healthcare law and ethics. It is written by a well established practitioner in the field, which is evident from the topics covered and the appropriateness of the text at all levels. The text is accessible and interesting, giving real and fictional examples and including a lively selection of quotes. I recommend this book to anyone interested in legal and ethical issues, and would urge libraries to purchase it as a reference text for general use.

Anne Lydon
Honorary Teaching Fellow, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work, University of Manchester
Cancer Nursing Practice


Graham Avery has produced a valuable addition to the body of work on nursing and healthcare ethics. Offering thought-provoking new insights, the text is lively and accessible. It will help nurses to get to grips with the ethical and legal dimensions of some of the most challenging areas of practice.

Jean Bell
University of Stirling


Graham Avery’s book is a good introduction to law and ethics for nursing students, nurses and healthcare assistants. It is written in easy to read and accessible language. There are excellent, clear learning outcomes for each chapter, with real-life and fictional clinical scenarios to help gain greater understanding of the issues in practice.

Mark Cornock
Lecturer in Law, School of Law, The Open University
Nursing Standard

The accessible approach to this complex subject area are strengths of this text.  It would be appropriate for pre-registration healthcare students and experienced practitioners. 

Julie McGarry
School of Health Sciences, University of Nottingham

This is a handy and readable volume of information that can be quite overwhelming. it allows our students to read smartly and apply the theory to practice in a lively and relevant way for their class activities and their subsequent summative assessment

Mrs Janet Macfarlane
health, University of Bolton
July 1, 2016

This book explains the demands of law upon the nursing profession very well.

Mr Stuart Anthony Baker
School of Care Sciences, University of South Wales (Glamorgan)
May 11, 2016

I have just taken over this module recently and wish to update the recommended reading list. This book strikes a good balance for undergraduate students studying Health and social care Management. I shall therefore be speaking with our library service to ensure that this book is available for the students in the new semester.

Mr Andrew Evans
Faculty of Health, Sport and Science, University of South Wales (Glamorgan)
May 12, 2016

This book consist of series of case studies related to the ethics and legal issues in healthcare, which are appropriate for nursing and midwifery students.

Mrs Yetunde Akinnuoye
Health and Social Sciences, Middlesex University
March 29, 2016

A very comprehensive text. In particular the chapter specifically about children is of great interest and help. The application of ethical principles to practice scenarios is one of the main strong points of the text.

Mrs Jo Cleall
Child Health, Bournemouth University
May 28, 2015

This is an excellent book in informing student nurses of pertinent issues in relation to the law and ethics. The inclusion of real examples is really informative

Mrs Donna Stephanie Lewis
School of Health (Burton), Wolverhampton University
December 9, 2015

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 1: The English Legal System

Graham Avery