I’ve been thinking about nurses who are being stopped from posting and sharing on facebook or any of the other online forums because of the fear they’ll lose their jobs or betray patient confidentiality. Maybe we just need to find the real legal definition of “patient confidentiality” or who benefits from keeping “secrets” If the names are changed and circumstances altered a bit, one is allowed to write books. Why then not on facebook or any other nursing forum? Where is the “support” in the forums and groups if we’re not allowed to explain the situations that are causing us difficulty or moral distress? What are we afraid of and why? Does the ANA have a policy or who gives guidance on this aside from “keep secrets so you don’t get the institutions sued?” Are doctors held to the same standard or does the AMA have a policy? More important how can we fulfill our job of educating patients if we aren’t allowed to share with them what the real problems are? Then, doesn’t our vow become a sham? It is becoming increasingly difficult if not impossible to practice ethical nursing while staying well informed, because of the restraints placed on knowledge sharing with those who really need it. We really have to begin to rethink who we are willing to sacrifice and what we are willing to keep secret and still pretend we’re offering our patients informed consent.