Moral Principles Guiding NursingPractice Autonomy Based on the doctrine of informed consent The right of people to be left alone and to define their own destiny without interference— “self- determination” Free Choice and personal decisions
Principal-Based Ethics An approach to ethics that identifies/defines fundamental principles to guide behavior and decision-making Duty and obligation Duty to follow the universally accepted rules of what is right/wrong
Principal Based Ethics Beneficence--GOOD Practitioner should act in the best interest of the patient An obligation to accomplish good in service to others through acts such as mercy, kindness and generosity Non-maleficence “First, do no harm” to others (From the Hippocratic Oath) The duty to avoid the causing, permitting , or imposing harm, or the risk of harm to another person
Principal Based Ethics Justice Rule derived from Aristotle The obligation to Rx individuals equally or comparably Veracity Obligation to tell the truth and to give complete information to patients for decision-making Fidelity Obligation to keep promises/commitments/to remain loyal
Principal Based Ethics Privacy (HIPAA) Right of an individual/group to decide when and to what extent information about themselves can be revealed to others Confidentiality An extension of privacy—the right to limit the access of others to private information revealed by pt to his/her provider Respect Reverence for persons and human dignity
Informed Consent—The Right to Accept OR to Refuse Rx Usually includes: Health care professional’s recommendations for Rx Truthful, honest disclosure of information such as medical condition, nature and purpose of procedure, consequences, risks, benefits, name/s of person/s performing the Rx Patient’s understanding of information Voluntary consent/refusal without coercion Documentation of process
LEGAL vs. ETHICAL Legal—fulfills terms of law Ethical—fulfills terms of ethics and is higher than the law Actions can be: Ethical AND Legal Ethical but Illegal Unethical and Legal Unethical and Illegal Courts do NOT decide questions of ethics— Courts decide questions of law
Ethical Codes Religious codes Professional Organization Codes International Council of Nurses Code of Nurses (1973) American Medical Association Code of Ethics (2001) American Nurses Association Code for Nurses (2001) “The Code of Ethics for Nurses was developed as a guide for carrying out nursing responsibilities in a manner consistent with quality in nursing care and the ethical obligations of the profession.”
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