Discuss about the Ethical Issues In The Case Study Of Amos.
This paper is being presented in order to highlight the ethical issues in the case study of Amos who was the student of the high school and use to live in the residential property near to his school in Malawi. There were many other students who use to live in the boarding provided by the school. One day school reported to the hospital that students have come across with a disease i.e. Cholera Outbreak. Amos was also going through this disease and reached the hospital, however, doctors and nurses denied treating him because they do not have enough medical supplies to treat everyone. Therefore, they said that they will only treat students who live in the school boarding. Due to this Amos went his home to get the treatment but unfortunately as he was severely dehydrated.
The paper will perform the analysis of the ethical issues in relations to the notions of human dignity, human rights, and professional codes of conduct, professional policies, and principles of health care ethics. Further, recommendations will be made for the professional practice.
Ethics is a moral principles system; it is related to identifying what is best for people and community and is also explained as moral philosophy (Barrett, D., Ortmann, Dawson, Saenz, Reis & Bolan, 2016). The ethical issues are said to be a conflict of right or wrong or condition forcing substitutes on an entity looking for ethical behaviour (Levine, 2017). In the presented case study where there was a spread of severe disease i.e. Cholera outbreak, there were some ethical issues such as:
Balancing care quality and efficiency- The healthcare system is facing various challenges or issues related to the balancing quality and safety with efficiency (Berglund, 2012). The above case presented is also facing this challenges in which they are not able to balance in the safety and quality provided to the children and due to which Amos who was the student of high school died because of not getting proper treatment of the disease.
Improving access to care- The ACA (Affordable Care Act) was frequently left untouched by the confiscate, the continuing issue of offering everybody with access to basic care in terms of medical remains a concern (Neese, 2017). This is one of the key issues in the healthcare sector as presented in the above case in which everyone was not getting the treatment.
Building and sustaining the healthcare workforce of the future- As the generation of baby boomer remains is increasing there is a need of additional healthcare professionals in order to take care of this generation or population to manage to treat chronic diseases, organize care and offer many other services. However, there are not enough capable, concerned people who not only take entry as the healthcare personnel but continue to deliver that care. In spite of a current influx of younger people into the treatment occupation, for example, many specialists are predicting a recovery of the nursing scarcity by the end of this decade. In the presented case study there was lack of medical supplies and nurses to take care of every student and therefore they denied treating those students who use to live in the residential property and not in the school boarding.
Allocating limited medications and donor organs- Medication scarcities frequently happen because there is not sufficient economic enticement for producers. Therefore, there is lack of critical medications accessibility to fulfill the needs of the people in the future (AMN Healthcare, 2013).
Dignity reflects that every individual has worthy respect, honor and Medicare for who they are, not just for what they can do (McGregor, 2017). In other words, human dignity or self-respect cannot be earned and not even can be taken away. It is an absolute provided to human as gift same as Medicare it is also the right of every person to receive medical treatment deprived of cast, place, age, etc. (Barak, 2015) The above ethical issue i.e. of balancing care quality and efficiency is against the human dignity as every human has right to get safe and quality of care whenever needed.
The human right to health states that everybody possesses the right to the maximum possible standard of mental and physical health, which comprises entree to every service of medical, sufficient food, hygiene, health conditions of working and decent housing and a clean environment (National Economic and Social Rights Initiatives, 2018). The issue which was faced in the above case study of improving access to care which is against the human rights as every human has right to get the medical facility, however, Amos was denied by the doctors to access the medical facility just because he used to live in a residential property and not in school boarding.
Professional Code of Ethics i.e. be inclusive
According to this code of ethics, the medical professionals need to welcome and help people of every identity and backgrounds (Betterteam, 2018). This includes every member of any gender, expression, ethnicity, national, sexual orientation, economic class, immigration status, size, educational level, religion, physical ability, national origin, age, family status, race, culture, color, political belief, and mental ability (Freegard & Isted, 2012). Considering the above case the professionals i.e. doctors and nurses who were on duty of taking care and providing medical treatment to the student. It was their duty to allow Amos to enter the hospital and take treatment; however, they denied providing him treatment because he was not staying in the school boarding.
Principles of Health Care Ethics i.e. Beneficence
According to this principle, providers of health care should perform all the activities that they can do to benefit the patient in every condition. All measures and conducts mentioned should be with the purpose to do the best for the patient (Beauchamp & Childress, 2013). In order to ensure beneficence, practitioners of medicine should create and maintain high level of knowledge and skill, must be confirmed that they are qualified in the most present and finest medical practices, and should go through their individual patient’s conditions, what is best for single patient and not necessary that will benefit the another patient (SJU, 2018). Considering the above case the doctors and nurses went against this principle by denying Amos for the treatment of severe disease i.e. Cholera outbreak due to which he died. It was doctor’s duty to consider his medical condition and provide his proper treatment.
From the above case analysis, it can be recommended that doctor and nurses who were on the duty to provide treatment to the school students should have followed all the codes and conduct of their profession and have allowed Amos for the treatment which would have saved his life. However, this didn't happen therefore, it can be said that all the global professionals of health sector must go through their codes and conduct and should remember their initial oath which they took while entering in this profession of helping every patient in his or her worst condition without considering their age, religion, location, family status, etc. This is being recommended because according to the human rights every person has right to access the medical facilities.
Besides this, the case study highlighted that there was scarcity of medical facilities due to which doctors have to say no to Amos there’re, it can be recommended that government should take it seriously and should try to increase the number of health facilities, doctors and nurses so that they can save provide quality of assistance to the patients.
The school authorities should also have taken some steps to save Amos but they didn't, therefore, it can be recommended that every school should appoint a doctor considering the health of every student whether they are living in boarding or outside the premises. Along with this, they should maintain contact with nearby hospitals that have sufficient facilities and can help in an emergency.
In the conclusion, it can be said that if the school authorities and responsible doctors would have considered the health situation of Amos and followed the codes of conduct of their profession then would have resulted in saving his life. However, they violated the principle of Health Care Ethics i.e. Beneficence and went against human dignity, human rights. The above paper has highlighted each ethical issue that is present in the case i.e. Balancing care quality and efficiency, Improving access to care, Building and sustaining the healthcare workforce of the future, and Allocating limited medications and donor organs. The paper has done the analysis of all the ethical issues in relation to the notions of human rights, professional codes and conduct, human dignity, and principles of health care ethics.
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