AIDS Case Study Essay

2196 Words Mar 24th, 2014 9 Pages
Client Profile: Mr. Thomas is a 42 year old man admitted to the hospital with complaints of shortness of breath, fever, fatigue and oral thrush. The health care provider reviews the laboratory and diagnostic tests with Mr. Thomas and informs him he has pneumonia and is HIV positive. Mr. Thomas believes that he contracted HIV while involved in an affair with another woman three years ago. He is afraid to tell his wife, knowing she will be angry and that she may leave him.
Case Study: The nurse assigned to care for Mr. Thomas reads in the medical record (chart) that he learned two days ago he was HIV positive. There is a note in the record that indicates that Mr. Thomas has not told his wife the diagnosis. To complete a
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3. Discuss the ethical dilemmas inherent in this case.

HIV disclosure is defined as a 'complex and multifaceted process of making a voluntary or involuntary decision about whom to inform about one's status, why, when, where and how' . This is particularly challenging when it comes to informing patients' sexual partners, also referred to as partner notification.
The three approaches to partner notification include: i) source referral, whereby the health care provider encourages the patients to alert their partners themselves; ii) provider referral, whereby the health care provider notifies the partners with the consent of the patients while respecting the patients' confidentiality; and iii) conditional referral, whereby the patients in agreement with the health care provider are supposed to inform their partners within a given time frame otherwise the health care provider will do so (but without revealing the patients' identity)(2)

4. Does the health care provider have a legal obligation to tell anyone other than Mr. Thomas that he is HIV positive? If so, discuss.

Legally, the nurse can’t tell anyone. "In court notifying an HIV-positive patient's partner can be argued in terms of breaching professional ethics because ethically it is wrong to disclose your patient's result or diagnosis to third parties without that individual's consent.”

5. Any loss, such as loss of one’s health,
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