Intended for healthcare professionals
CPD modules

Promoting better care for stigmatised patients

  • Peer reviewed
  • Certificate
  • Learning time: 02 hrs
  • Last updated: 2019
  • Link to RCNi Revalidation Portfolio

This learning module discusses the role of nurses and nurse leaders in the prevention and resolution of patient stigmatisation. The many factors that hamper nurse-patient interactions are outlined, and the antecedents and consequences of patient stigmatisation discussed. Leadership strategies are explored, and readers are encouraged to reflect on the role of patient stigmatisation in nursing practice.

Don't forget that you don't have to complete our two-hour learning modules all in one go. Tailor your learning to fit your busy schedule by undertaking one or two sections at a time. You can stop and save your learning at any point, and pick up where you left off when you return.

Intended learning outcomes

After reading this module and completing the time out activities you should be able to:

  • Examine patient stigmatisation and its consequences.
  • Outline the professional and ethical mandates to prevent and counteract patient stigmatisation.
  • Identify leadership strategies to promote patient and nurse dignity when patient stigmatisation has occurred.
  • Describe techniques used to prevent patient stigmatisation.

This module is broken down into the following sections:

  • Introduction
  • Antecedents and consequences of patient stigmatisation
  • Distinguishing characteristics of professional nurse-patient interactions
  • Leadership strategies for resolving nurse-patient conflict
  • Strategies for preventing difficult nurse-patient encounters
  • Conclusions


Please note that information provided by RCNi Learning is not sufficient to ensure competence in the skill. Assessment of competence should take place in line with local practice. Practice should always align with local protocols and procedures, latest guidelines and any regulatory code. All modules should currently be viewed together with available national and local Covid-19 guidelines. For advice, go to

Jessica Pottle, Registered nurse, Virginia Mason Hospital, Seattle, Washington, United States.
Jill Marotta, Clinical leader, Virginia Mason Hospital, Seattle, Washington, United States.

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Pre and post module tests let you measure your progress. Further reading list included