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Nursing and scarce resources - Essay Example

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Nursing and Scarce Resources Defining the Issue The nursing career which involves offering health care to a wide range of patients requites substantial amounts of resources to achieve the objectives of heath care. However, just like any other field, nursing faces scarcity of resources and hence nurses are not able to offer effective healthcare…
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Download file to see previous pages Indeed, there have been numerous studies on the allocation of scarce resources in nursing. However, Health care administrators face numerous challenges in making wise decisions that relate to allocation of scarce resources in nursing. Ideally, the issue in this context involves the complexity and challenges of making ethical resource allocation decisions about health care. Describing Five Influencing Factors Notably, there are six factors which influence allocation decisions in the distribution of scarce resources in the health care system. These factors include need, contribution, equity, patient effort, ability to pay, and merit. Indeed, while most patients suffer from situations that warrant a known medical need for treatment or service, different persons may perceive need differently from the health care providers. As such, the professional justification of need defines the amount of resources required for a certain treatment (Maddox 1). However, this justification may vary with that of a patient. Hence, need influences the allocation decisions that impact the patient although it is not a good basis for such decisions. Additionally, contribution also influences allocation decision making for scarce resources as the health providers seek to establish the significance of an individual to the society in the future. Indeed, young children, professionals, and skilled personnel may attract considerable allocation of resources compared to the older, unskilled, and poorly educated individuals (Maddox 1). However, this criterion is unfair and thus not the best for allocating scarce resources in nursing. Another factor that influences decisions in allocating scarce resources is equity which seeks to achieve equitable allocation of resources in health care. As such, as administrators seek to achieve equity, they influence their allocation decisions. However, although this criterion is relevant, it is not effective in that individuals have a wide range of demand for health care services and thus do not require equal allocation of health care resources (Maddox 1). Moreover, the ability to pay also influences allocation of resources where individuals choose their health plan (Maddox 1). Hence we will consider the individuals’ ability to pay for the chosen health plan. However, this criterion limits the benefits accrued from decisions made on allocation of resources especially on those who cannot afford to pay for health care. Ultimately, merit also influences decision making on the allocation of resources to the health care where allocation is based on merit (Maddox 1). The criterion is ethically correct and derives numerous benefits as the administrators seek to be ethically right and fair in the decision making process. However, this criterion requires data to define the merits and conflicting data may demean the positive influence of merit in making allocation decisions. Citing the Data That Supports the Importance of the Issue We have a sample of 109 managers, 269 clinicians working in one of four VA medical centers which sought to characterize the staff members' perceptions on regarding the fairness of healthcare ethics practices. Generally, the clinicians were more critical on allocation processes and the impact of resource decisions on patient care. Moreover, clinicians and managers stated that they insufficient information on ethics used in addressing ethical problems that ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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