Ethical Dilemma Essay


Patient confidentiality is becoming an integral aspect of healthcare honest standards since the HIPPA law came into being. (Erikson 2005).

In line with the American Nursing staff Association (ANA) code of ethics “the nurse has a duty to take care of confidentiality of patient information” (Nursingworld, 2005). When a patient’s confidentiality can be violated, his/ her wellbeing is negatively impacted. Patient privacy encompasses safeguarding any information the patient reveals to medical staff, and not divulging or writing it in front of large audiences. If trust is betrayed, the patient would be uncomfortable and reluctant to talk about their exclusive and personal info.

The nursing profession is created on trust and featuring good care, and limited reasons to breach a patient’s trust. A infringement of confidentiality means revealing a patient’s information into a third party without the patient’s permission or an order via court and this may be done by phone, verbally or digitally. If this type of disclosure of the patient’s data is shared to unauthorized persons, a breach of confidentiality effects and this provides ethical and legal implications. The law shields patient’s directly to confidentiality and nurses possess a meaningful duty to do the right thing for the individual. Understanding the moral principles is vital because it supplies the basis for nursing practice.

According to the American Nurses Affiliation, the moral principles that underlie confidentiality are autonomy ( agreement to admiration another’s right to self-determine an option; support of independent decision making), beneficence ( compassion; taking confident action to help others; desire to do very good; core basic principle of our affected person advocacy) and nonmaleficence (avoidance of injury or injure ). These principles ensure that nurses act in a way that benefits the patient, leading to no injury, respecting the patient’s personal data and marketing patient’s directly to self-governing. It must however become noted that we now have many situations that can arise in which sufferer confidentiality becomes a dilemma for nurses.

Dilemmas around confidentiality occur when the rule of privacy is in conceivable conflict with other ethical guidelines such as avoiding harm to the person or others. The scenario below highlights this point: Per day after he was admitted towards the hospital, Fiifi was informed that he can HIV great. The medical team encouraged him to make contact with his lovemaking partner and inform her of his status.

For the past 15 weeks, Fiifi has been in a relationship with Derby and they are expecting a baby in six weeks’ period. Before this relationship Fiifi admits possessing a series of sex partners. a few days later, it became crystal clear that he has not advised Derby of his HIV status. Being aware of the baby, rapidly to be given birth to, the medical team tells Fiifi that steps ought to be taken to assess whether Derby is HIV positive and whether the baby is at risk or not so that important treatment could be initiated. At this time, Fiifi was reluctant to share Derby as well as threatens to sue the hospital if the girl with told with out his agreement. What should the team do?

This is a normal case of ethical dilemma; should the team inform Derby or what? A critical examination reveals the fact that principle of autonomy requires that private information should not be revealed without consent. However , sometimes the autonomy of another individual may also be for play as it is in this case Derby, the previous sex partners and the baby the moment born. Not really disclosing info may limit their capability to make decisions regarding treatment and life-style and thereby violating the principle of non maleficence. Even though preserving confidentiality is vital, the consequences of disclosing or certainly not disclosing are important considerations.

In this scenario for instance , the consequences of non-disclosure can be identified as, the danger that Derby may be HIV positive and the effect of not really providing details to enable her to be examined is that she actually is harmed simply by not knowing her HIV position and not receiving a course of treatment. If Derby is HIV confident and is not aware of the risk, the consequences are that she could not take steps to minimize the risk of contamination to the baby; For example , obtaining treatment during pregnancy or prophylactic treatment and knowing never to breastfeed. In the event that Derby finds out later that there was a risk to her and that your woman was not up to date, she may possibly lose trust in the healthcare system.

The scenario in this article presents a conflict where the nurse is definitely torn between an obligation to the patient and an obligation towards the others (Derby, the baby to be born plus the other intimate partners). Making use of the ANA code of values as a frame of research, The Code of Ethics for Healthcare professionals with Interpretive Statements (ANA, 2001), focuses on the responsibility with the nurse to promote the well being, health and security of the general public. Further, the code claims that the primary commitment of the nurse is to the patient.

This can be like a double-edged sword. It should however become noted there is an exception to the principle of confidentiality, which will justified around the basis that the breach of confidentiality might help prevent trouble for an recognizable person, which is buttressed by the ANA’s provision there are some conditions to this duty such as a higher need to protect the patient and also other parties (Nursingworld, 2012).

  • Category: Integrity
  • Words: 932
  • Pages: 4
  • Project Type: Essay

Need an Essay Writing Help?
We will write a custom essay sample on any topic specifically for you
Do Not Waste Your Time
Only $13.90 / page