Ethical Dilemmas In Nursing Research Paper

Words: 934
Pages: 4

The decisions nurses make daily can impact a patient’s life tremendously. At times, however, those decisions are not so cut and dry. Many times, a nurse encounters ethical dilemmas that test their own morals and values. For instance, a conflict may arise when a patient and their family’s desires conflict with one another. For example, a Do Not Resuscitate order (DNR) which can be a difficult decision because of its implications. Therefore, ethics, values, morals and bioethics must be considered when deciding the course of action that should be taken. This paper will analyze the ethical implications of this dilemma by utilizing the ethical decisions model and integrating ethical principles and tying that to a patient with a DNR and the family …show more content…
The first step of the process is to highlight the issue at hand, who is affected, the ethical principle, conflicts, and how much time one has to make a decision. Reflecting back to the DNR patient, the issue at hand would be patient rights. Those involved are the patient, family, and the nurse. The six ethical principles are autonomy, beneficence, nonmaleficence, justice, fidelity, and veracity. Out of the six principles, this situation would include autonomy and fidelity. Autonomy is the patient’s ability to make their own decisions and fidelity is honoring the patient’s wishes. The values conflicting are those between the patient’s wishes to that of the family who wants to implement measures to ensure the patient is kept alive. As for the time frame, it would be best to discuss this matter during the admission process.
The next step is to gather all relevant data that will aid in the decision-making process. This could include legal cases or other precedents. In accordance with this, the Patient Self-Determination Act (PSDA) which was passed in 1990 states that a patient has the legal right to decide how they will be treated in a life-death situation. Translating this back to the patient who has the DNR, this patient has the right—the legal right to decide how he will be treated in a life-death
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The solution is to provide moral support to the family, talking to the family about their options would be a good way to provide moral support. As a nurse, she could educate and answer the family’s questions which could bring comfort to the family. Also, if applicable suggest spiritual healing. For instance, seeking guidance from God if they are Catholic. Lastly, the last step is to evaluate. Did the solution work? Is the family less weary and scared about the DNR? The death of a loved one does not come easy and no matter how prepared one may be, there is still no preparation when the person does finally leave this earth. However, by being proactive and instilling support groups and supporting the family as they go through this journey, can lessen the pain. If the solution did not work, the nurse must reevaluate and craft a new