Ethical Dilemmas Of The Health Care Of Dr. Vivian Essay

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All medical providers have a duty to protect the health and dignity of their patients. Even if that is the intention of the provider, specific ethical dilemmas in healthcare may arise making it difficult for the provider to make an ethically appropriate choice. Wit, directed by Mike Nichols, takes the viewer through the healthcare of Dr. Vivian Bearing, an English professor, as she embarks on an eight-month experimental treatment to hopefully cure her stage IV ovarian cancer. As Dr. Bearing undergoes this treatment, ethical issues arise regarding her healthcare that compromises her well-being and dignity. George D. Pozgar points out that ethics is concerned with values relating to human conduct that focuses on the rightness and wrongness of actions, as well as the goodness and badness of motives and ends.1 It is clear in the film that the actions taken by the medical providers, violated ethical principles within the scope of health care such as patient dignity and respect, patient autonomy, and consent to research/treatment. According to AAPA, a principal value of healthcare professions is to respect the health, safety, welfare, and dignity of all human beings.2 It is evident in the film that the team of Dr. Kelekian and Dr. Posner, who are in charge of Dr. Bearing’s treatment, disregards these human rights, that healthcare providers swear to protect. Throughout the movie, Dr. Kelekian and Dr. Posner view Dr. Bearing more as a research experiment than a patient. In one

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