Ethical Dilemma Nursing

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Description of an Ethical Dilemma According to Masters (2015), “An ethical dilemma is a situation in which an individual is compelled to make a choice between two actions that will affect the well-being of a sentient being, and both actions can be reasonably justified as being good, neither actions is readily justifiable as good, or the goodness of the actions is uncertain” (p. 129). In practice, nurses are continually faced with varying ethical issues and dilemmas. When making day-to-day decision nurses must rely on their critical thinking skills to aid in their decision-making (Masters, 2015). Ethical decisions originate from well thought out findings constructed from the following variables: personal and professional values, competencies,…show more content…
The ANA Scope and Standards of Nursing Practice standard 7: Ethics (2015), states a registered nurse (RN), “Advocates for healthcare consumers’ rights to informed decision-making and self-determination” (p.67). The ANA Scope and Standards of Nursing Practice Standard 7: Ethics (2015) also says, an RN will practice with empathy, kindness, consideration, and respect for inherent self-respect and worth, advocate for patients rights and well-being, and work with other health professionals to protect patient rights, and decrease health disparities (Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice, 2015). The ANA Code of Ethics for Nurses with Interpretive Statements provision 1.4: The Right to Self-Determination states…show more content…
During Mr. Jensen’s admission, he would have been provided written information on his rights regarding his healthcare decision-making and advance directives (Compliance with Advance Directives: Nursing’s View, 1999). At that time nurse Miller and his physician discussed with Mr. Jensen and his family what his preferences were regarding end-of-life treatments, which interventions he would like and which he would want to be withheld. Mr. Jensen’s decided which end-of-life treatments he would want and his wishes were documented in his medical chart and his physician signed a “Do Not Resuscitate” (DNR) order according to hospital policy. As a patient advocate nurse Miller should make sure Mr. Jensen’s healthcare wishes are respected (Compliance with Advance Directives: Nursing’s View, 1999). In this case study, the concept of patient autonomy is being impacted. Masters (2015) defines autonomy as the agreement to respect a person’s right to self-determine their medical course of action without interference, including the right to set parameters for medical interventions. Independent choices have three essential characteristics: they are sufficiently informed, they are voluntary instead of forced, and they
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