Ethical Dilemmas in the Nursing Field

537 WordsFeb 23, 20182 Pages
There are several dilemmas in the nursing field though nurses reactions to ethical dilemmas are based on their individual values and beliefs as well as ethical principles, professional codes and the climate of the healthcare setting. Nurses encounter ethical dilemmas when conflicting values and judgments are present regarding what is the best course of patient care. Ethical dilemmas are faced by nurses on a daily bases. I am choosing two of these dilemmas to address. 1. Empirical Knowledge vs. Personal Beliefs: Empirical knowledge is the type of knowledge that includes empirical research, scientific enquiry, reductionism and positivism, it is often viewed as ‘true’ or ‘valid’ knowledge that can be theoretically explained by scientific traditional ideas like psychology, pharmacology, sociology and biology or by rigorous empirical testing which include knowledge from books, journals and conferences. Example: If a patient is diagnosed with cancer the nurse has a simple list of description like observations, tables of evidence, graphs, empirical hypothesis, empirical definitions, generalizations, and scientific laws with no personal knowledge to help the patient understand. Personal Knowledge: This concerns being self-aware, it does not emanate from books, journals, lectures or conferences it refers to the fact that “w e know more than we say” (Polyani 1966) or “understanding without rationale” (Benner and Tanner 1987). Itr can be as valid as scientific knowledge and nurses can

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