Nursing Ethical Dilemma

1678 Words7 Pages
A lot of dilemmas face the nursing profession. These ethical dilemmas faced by nurses is unique and covers a myriad of issues. According to Loyola University (2017) the International Council of Nurses’ (ICN) Code of Ethics posits that, alongside the inherent responsibilities of promoting health, easing suffering, and preventing illness, a respect for human rights: cultural rights, the right to life and choice, right to dignity, and the right to be treated with respect, is a critical part of the job. Certain values and principles guide the decision-making process in nursing (Loyola University, 2017). These are the building blocks of nursing ethics, thus raising the subject of ethical dilemma. According to Purtilo & Doherty (2016), an ethical dilemma is a common type of situation that involves two or more morally correct courses of action that cannot both be followed simultaneously. This involves both ethical conflict and conduct, in which one course of action precludes the other (Purtilo & Doherty, 2016). According to the American Nurses Association [ANA] (2017), there are regulatory mechanisms instituted that are focused on ensuring the best standards of ethics in the nursing profession and practice. These rules are referred to as the Code of Ethics for Nurses with Interpretive Statements (The Code). The code was established as a guide for executing nursing responsibilities in a style consistent with quality of care in nursing, as well as the ethical obligations of the nursing profession. The ethical dilemma covers a broad range, ranging from; challenging the impacts of staffing shortage on patient quality of care, to the decision on the allocation of scarce resources, or blood to patients (Johns Hopkins University (2015). They comprise birth complications and end-of-life issues and all the other issues between these two extremes (John’s Hopkins Magazine, 2015). Notable amongst these dilemma is the ethical dilemma depicted in the debate on empirical knowledge and personal belief for blood transfusion, which is the focus of this paper. One of the basic aspects of nursing practice is blood transfusion. Its safe practice is determined by nurses’ knowledge (Hijji, Parahoo, Hussein & Barr (2013). What is blood
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