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What information is required on name tags?

I am a nurse working on a mental health in-patient unit. Our employer has a policy where employees have to wear name tags stating full names. My colleagues and I are uncomfortable with this practice because of personal safety concerns. What are our accountabilities as nurses to disclose our full name to patients? 

Nurses are accountable for identifying themselves to patients. You should always introduce yourself using your first name, last name, title and role in the patient’s care.

CNO recommends that a nurse’s name tag include the first name, last name and category of registration. Patients are entitled to know the names of nurses who provide them with health care services. Identification of a nurse allows patients to hold the nurse accountable for their professional conduct.

Some practice settings may choose not to display a nurse’s full name on name tags. However, nurses should not expect to be able to maintain anonymity and must remain accountable for identifying themselves to their patients.

A nurse who has reasonable grounds to be concerned for their safety and well-being when disclosing their full name is encouraged to work with their employer who is responsible to help protect the nurse against workplace violence and harassment. 

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Page last reviewed March 01, 2019