Jehovah's Witness

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Introduction This paper highlights the story of a woman who was a Jehovah’s Witness. She was twenty-eight-year-old when she was pregnant and refused a blood transfusion, which could have potentially saved herself and her unborn baby. The woman needed medical treatment because she was diagnosed with leukemia. She refused a blood transfusion because of her religious beliefs, and thus, refusal of treatment led to her baby dying and she passed away from an ischemic stroke (Meddows, Johnston & Sun, 2015). A dilemma about a Jehovah Witness woman was explored to determine the utilitarian framework. According to Feldman (2006), utilitarianism is an ethical point of view that believes a positive act is one that maximizes pleasure and minimizes…show more content…
This approach tries to get the maximum benefit of one’s welfare or good for everyone in society or hospital division. In addition, an approach that brings happiness and good to one individual may affect the wellbeing of another person. Thus, nurses must prioritize their care based on utilitarian judgments to decide which need is greater, or which situation is more serious (Alpers & Hanssen, 2010). For the purpose of this study, a dilemma regarding a pregnant Jehovah’s Witness was selected, because she refused a blood transfusion to potentially save her life due to religious beliefs. Refusal for treatment resulted in the death of both mother and child. By reviewing the Jehovah’s Witness case, it may determine whether the action by the medical team to respect maternal autonomy, led to maximum welfare for the individuals involved and society. Using a utilitarian approach, one could argue the results in two different…show more content…
Besides, unborn babies do not have the same rights like the mother because they cannot make informed decisions (Why Doctors Had to Let, 2015). So refusal to respect the mother’s autonomy will raise many questions about the hospital’s principles, result in lack of trust for the medical facility in the future, and raise other ethical issues. Thereby, one could argue that the decision to respect the mother’s choice of action has given her maximum happiness, because she had peace of mind and was able to maintain her religious rights. In addition, the hospital administration will prove that they respect patients’ choices and refrain from pain if the hospital administration has to deal with legal issues for not honoring patient’s autonomy. However, the decision to respect the patient autonomy does not have a strong wellbeing for the baby, the mother’s relatives, and some members of
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