According to Lisa Beeline this is not an easy question to answer. In her book, First, Do No Harm, Lisa follows four different patients and their families and their struggle to answer these complex, sometimes impossible questions. When issues such as medical futility, patients with no health coverage, and Infants with serious birth defects arise the ethical issues are vast.
Questions surrounding the ethical treatment of these patients and most importantly the best treatment for the patients are faced at hospitals throughout the entry on a daily basis. The answers rarely come easy and the ethical responsibilities of the medical professionals in conjunction with the struggle to provide the best care are prevalent in each and every case. How long should a doctor continue treatment when the chance of survival is minimal to none?
With the advanced medical technology it Is easy to keep critically ill patients, Like Patrick Dislike, alive longer than ever before; feeding tubes, advanced antibiotics, ventilators, radiation and many other invasive techniques are at the doctors dispense. After all treatments have been exhausted the patient can become Do Not Resuscitate patient or (DON), because any further medical treatment is deemed futile. However, there are certain cultures that will never allow a patient to become DON based in their spiritual and cultural background.
This of course is always taken Into consideration and medical professionals will do whatever possible to save the life of the patient at the family’s request. Once a patient becomes DON the goal then becomes not to prolong the life of the patient but to make the life the patient has left as comfortable as possible. Care in the end stages of disease is now as Hospice Care of Palliative CARE. During this time they are normally treated with medication to ease the pain with no further efforts made to stop the process of the disease.
By law, hospitals are required to treat patients even when they lack health insurance when they are admitted through an Emergency Room. Once the Initial condition is stabilized, the hospital is required to treat that person until they can care for themselves. There are certain situations where the patient never fully recovers and there is no alternative place of care such as family or friends willing to take on he responsibility of a high maintenance individual. The hospital usually ends up absorbing that responsibility.
The legal obligation to care for a patient, especially long-term patients means Glenn the “standard of care treatment. ” Experts agree that this “standard” is appropriate, accepted, and widely used. Health care providers are obligated to provide patients with this recognized standard. While they are given the basic necessities to sustain them accessories” and specialized equipment like the wheelchair for Armband Dimes are often denied due to lack of funding. They are often transferred out to cheaper and less therapeutic institutions.
Furthermore, what benefit does surgery hold for a baby who has what Is consolable a non-terminal Alcohols TTY Ana won NAS ten Tall say In Tanat calicles? In the case of London, the baby with spins biffed, the answer can be found in the do no harm principal. When the parents’ decision will result in harm to the child, than the hospital or attending physician has the authority to override their authority and seek out someone such as a court appointed guardian to determine what is best for the patient.
According to Ronald Munson, “When parents fail to take reasonable steps to secure the welfare of their children, then doing so becomes a matter of interest to the state” (Munson 107). A parent cannot make the decision to withhold care simply because they feel their child will suffer handicaps they are not equipped to emotionally or pay for it in the long term. There are regulations set in place to ensure that minors have the opportunity to experience life to the fullest of their physical capacity when the illness is not considered a terminal one. As a future Nurse, this book was an eye opening one.
It forced me to put myself in situations I had not thought of before and to contemplate what I would do had I been faced with these difficult decisions. The book also showed me that there is more to caring for patients than simply administering treatments and trying to cure the body. There are people and families with cultural preferences different from our own that are trusting the medical professionals they encounter to treat them as humans, with respect and honesty. They expect to be guided into making the best decision possible for the people they care about.
I realize that the issues described in this kook are severe and solutions to care are not always cut and dry, there are grey areas that we all must wade through. There are teams of medical staff in hospitals who come together to make important life altering decisions regarding the lives of individuals some of them have never even met. From a nurse’s perspective, care is always the foremost goal but there are so many other perspectives and as a medical staff we must be able to come together with the families and patients to form a treatment plan and we must learn to overcome the difficult ethical dilemmas that are always present.