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Integrity: The Anchor for Moral Resilience 

Integrity: The Anchor for Moral Resilience
Integrity: The Anchor for Moral Resilience

Cynda Hylton Rushton

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date: 28 February 2021

Integrity or moral wholeness is the foundation of moral resilience. Integrity arises when intentions, words, thoughts, and actions align and there is fidelity in adherence to ethical commitments, norms, and conscience. It includes a robust notion of moral agency that includes considerations of the congruence of intentions, character, choices, behavior, and actions as well as responsibility for them. It requires a well-honed conscience; moral sensitivity, perception, and imagination; self-regulatory capacities; ongoing reflection to evaluate one’s intentions, motivations, and actions; cognitive judgment; the ability to devise reasonable solutions to internal conflicts; and steadfast commitment to responsibly enact considered decisions. Clinicians have dual obligations to those they serve and to themselves. Personal and relational integrity are fundamental considerations for clinicians. This dynamic interplay requires attunement to the issues of personal and relational integrity that are at play in clinical practice, including relationships with patients, families, colleagues, leaders, organizations, and the broader society.

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