Ethical & Legal Evaluation - Case Study Example

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Name: University: Course: Tutor: Date: Legally Significant Events In the first case scenario, some of the legally significant events include the facts that Mrs. Jordan had taken the time out to write an advanced care directive which clearly stipulated that her wish was that no life sustaining medical treatment (LSMT) should be offered to her in the event that she happens to contract a terminal illness…
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Ethical & Legal Case Study Evaluation
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Download file to see previous pages There are also chances of civil liability ensuing (Guido, G. 2009). Though The Human Rights Act 1998 identifies a right to life in Article 2. A court ruling, NHS Trust A v M: NHS Trust B v H [2001, affirmed that the patient’s right to willingly refuse treatment, and whether it was in the patient’s ‘best interests’ to forgo treatment were the two key factors determine whether treatment will be foregone. The patient’s right to intentionally refuse treatment, was recognized as being both legal and not the same as suicide, this was despite the fact that the refusal would ultimately lead to the patient’s death (Chiarella 2006). Legality of Janet’s Actions Janet’s actions can be termed as being illegal because, according to NHS guidelines on the discontinuation of (LSMT), in occasion a disagreement amongst the team members, the team should sit down and consider the basis of the disagreement and try to obtain an opinion from a medical professional who happens to be working in a discipline that is the same as the disagreeing member. This was clearly not followed in the case of Dr. Johnson’s disagreement with the other attending nurses (Guido, G. 2009). Janet the nurse did not consult with all the staff included in the patient’s care when she made the decision to discontinue the supply of Mrs. Jordan’s noradrenaline. This was in direct contravention of a checklist used in the ruling by Dame Elizabeth Butler-Sloss in Case: Re B (an adult: refusal of medical treatment) [2002] 2 All ER 449. One of the requirements in the checklist was that there must be adequate consultation between all the staff involved before a decision is made (McIlwraith &Madden 2006). Ethical Features Mrs. Jordan was undergoing palliative chemotherapy, for pancreatic adenocarcinoma that was in its advanced stage and there were not chances that she would recover. Her quality of life was severely hampered and her family understood this and wanted the Life Sustaining Medical Treatment to be discontinued. Their intentions are seen to be inline with the doctrine of double effect (Chirella 2006) Ethicality of Janet’s Actions Janet’s actions can be viewed as being ethical as supported by a court ruling, Re Conroy [1985] that upheld that a patient declining life-sustaining treatment could not be viewed as an attempt to commit suicide. The action merely allows a disease to follow its natural course. If the patient dies, it could not be termed as a self-inflicted injury but it would be considered to be the result of the underlying disease. She was not responsible for the death (Charella 2006). Legally significant Events in the Alternate Version of the Case Scenario In the second Scenario, there was sufficient consultation between the medical staff attending to Mrs. Jordan and her family before Janet was instructed to withdraw the LSMT. Hence this is perfectly legal in accordance with the Ministry of Health Guidelines (Ministry of Health). The medical professionals and members of the family were also in agreement as opposed to the first scenario where their views were divergent. Dr. Jackson also complied with Mrs. Jordan’s Advanced Care Directive which clearly stated that she did not want to receive LSMT. This is in compliance with the law as opposed to the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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