Ethical Dilemma: The Use of Drug A in the ER

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If the hospital permits the ER physicians to take Drug A, it is important that the public is made aware of this. Aside being made aware, they should be given insight on statistics of the drug and the positive and negative effects it has. They should also be presented with statistical data that proves the information provided to be correct and accurate. The hospital needs to be transparent with the public with their operations to gain trust with them and also because it is an ethical way to act.

            Personally, I do not find any compelling ethical reason that can lead to physicians being forbidden from using Drug A while working. The drug has been reported to reduce the chances of occurrence of medical errors by 20%, which is a largely significant value. The drug makes the physicians more effective over long shifts without causing adverse or lasting effects on their health, therefore, it can be recommended for use since it does not expose them to any risks. The effects that are negative that have been discovered to be associated with the use of the drug are minimal and are experienced in a small number of users, and their magnitude is small and containable.

            The nursing home staff do not have an argument that is ethically compelling to refuse the request by the family. The family is against their father being hand fed because he implicitly indicated in his living will that he would not want any treatment of that nature at the end of life. The physicians at the nursing home do not have any ethical argument to provide to go against the advanced directive because going against it would present legal and ethical issues for them. The decisions made by the patient were made while he was in a proper state of mind, and failure to respect his wishes would result in a sense of loss of dignity for the patient. The family continually cites that if their father saw the treatment ongoing, he would be dismayed. Regardless of an action being done to save a person’s life, the advance directive made at the end of life should not be ignored by physicians.

            If reaching an agreement between the staff and family is difficult, the family can push forward  legal means with respect to the living with the patient signed the will before his condition worsened. The patient signed the will and implicitly stated that all treatment should stop being administered once he is in a position where he is incapable of making decisions for himself. Also, he stated that the circumstances for application for all care and treatment are to be avoided regardless of  them  sustaining life. The law states that an advanced directive needs to be respected once the conditions that make it valid are met.

October 24, 2023



Addiction Illness Medicine

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