ESSAY: Applying Ethical Principles

Using at least two references (the case study and academic peer-reviewed journal article) and three in-text citations within the paper.


Applying Ethical Principles

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The need to provide quality healthcare continues to necessitate healthcare reforms in the US. Many policies have therefore been put in place by both the State and Federal agencies to advance such healthcare reforms. The result is the provision of care that respects patients, and all measures must improve health care delivery. To this end, healthcare professionals are under ethical and moral obligation to ensure they deliver quality care. Such principles and values dictate that healthcare decisions have to be fair, equitable as well as defensible. Additionally, every healthcare setting has established ethical codes of conduct that professionals must adhere to as they guarantee care. The four principles of healthcare ethics that healthcare practitioners must adhere to include autonomy that describes the right for patients to decide their medical care, beneficence that calls for healthcare providers to do everything for the benefit of the patient, justice which describes an element of fairness and non-maleficence that is balancing benefits of treatment and the risks or costs involved. This task will critically evaluate a case study that details an example of an ethical dilemma that healthcare professionals must contend with.

Overview of the case study

The selected case study is incident 10: “To vaccinate or not?” The study is about proud parents who are academically literate and hence can-do independent research on an emerging healthcare concern. Jenna and Chris who are the proud parents to their five-day old daughter wish to raise her in the most natural way possible. They desire to breastfeed their child exclusively and subject her to feeds made from organic products. Lastly, they don’t wish to have her vaccinated. The issue of not allowing vaccination is the most notable one, which they argue has been occasioned by research. According to them, the continued use of vaccines is the leading cause of autism. Using online mommy blogs, which expound on the implications of the vaccines in resulting to instances of autism. Their medical specialist, however, thinks otherwise and advises them to let the child be vaccinated. According to the doctor, vaccination helps reduce instances of infection and diseases such as measles. They also endorse the vaccination as safe as the safety profiles of all vaccines are regularly updated.

Analysis of Ethical Issues in the Case Study The three ethical decision-making models that can be used to evaluate the ethical dilemma are moral awareness, moral judgement and ethical behavior. For moral awareness, the healthcare provider must be aware of the ethical aspects and reason from the client’s perspective. For the case study, Dr. Angela knows the concerns of the use of the vaccines and can even outline some of the benefits that counter what the clients are stating. Therefore, the first step is clear as Dr. Kerr appreciated the concerns

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