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Ethical Dilemma in Nursing - Article Example

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In the "Ethical Dilemma in Nursing" paper, the resolution of an ethical dilemma pertaining to an elderly patient is elaborated by the author based on ethical laws and the nursing code of ethics, in the context of the review of the concerned literature. …
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Ethical Dilemma in Nursing
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Download file to see previous pages As a practitioner, the nurse attends to all the medical needs of the patient and as a leader, she takes decisions that relate to, influence and facilitate the actions of others with an aim to achieve a particular goal. As a researcher, the nurse aims to implement studies to determine the actual effects of nursing care and to work towards further improvement in nursing care (Nettina, 2006). In order to impart these duties in the most appropriate manner, nurses must not only possess sound knowledge of the subject, but they must also be aware of ethical laws and legislations and how to handle ethical dilemmas. This is because, through their career, nurses encounter many situations that are tangled in ethical complexities. As Hall (1992; cited in Silva and Ludwick, 1992) rightly put it "the ethics incorporated into good nursing practice are more important than knowledge of the law; practicing ethically saves the effort of trying to know all the laws." Clinical ethics literature pertaining to the nursing profession identifies four important values and principles, namely, respect to the autonomy of the patient and to act with nonmaleficence, beneficence, and justice (Nettina, 2006). Awareness of these principles helps in solving issues with ethical dilemmas. 

75-year-old James was brought to the out-patient department with complaints of fever, tiredness, shivering, frequent urination and restlessness. James is a known patient of diabetes and hypertension and has been on medication for these conditions for the past 16 years. He has also been suffering from dementia which was diagnosed a couple of years ago. On physical examination, James appeared, toxic, sick and tired. He appeared mildly delirious due to a high fever. The pulse rate was 120 per minute. Blood pressure-170/100mmHg. Respiratory rate- 26 per minute. Temperature 102 degrees F. Systemic examination of all the systems appeared normal. Spot random blood sugar was 300mg/dl.

James was accompanied by his 73-year-old wife. The couple has 2 children who lived abroad and thus they have to manage everything on their own.  ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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