Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing

1221 Words Oct 24th, 2012 5 Pages
Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing
University of Phoenix
Nursing
391

Ethical and Legal Issues in Nursing
Marianne, the 79-year old woman who presented with a hemorrhagic stroke in a recent case study, brings up thought for ethical debate. Her outlook is poor, with or without surgery, and she has no advanced directive. Her husband and children cannot come to an agreement on whether life support should end or if all resuscitative measures should be attempted. The following paper will discuss how the American Nurse’s Association Code of Nursing Ethics would influence a final decision, how personal and societal values can influence ethical decision making, the fundamental legal aspects of each case study, and the legal
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Personal upbringing including how, where and when a person is raised will impact their decision making process. In this case study, the three older children of the patient will more than likely have a different take on the current situation than the elderly father. The children may more quickly accept the reality that their mother will not recover or will have a poor quality of life if placed on permanent life support. The father will be faced with the fear of loss, and have old traditional values in place, such as, “do it all” mentality when caring for his wife.
Societal and cultural backgrounds will also play a key factor in that decision making process. For example, an orthodox Jewish family will have different values and morals than a traditional American or Latin family. These traditions will all need to be taken into account by health care professionals. Cultural and financial stability will also have a direct impact on a family’s final decision. If the family has the financial means to support a loved one, they might choose to extend that person’s life by placing them on life support and around the clock care.
In the case of Marianne, the family must reach an informed medical