Uploaded by Anthony Kimani

Intoduction to Bioethics

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Introduction to Bioethics; Bioethics at The Bedside
Bioethics is a branch of study in ethics that deals with the emerging ethical issues that
result as a virtue of our biological nature and focuses advancement in medicine and biology. It
can also be defined as moral discrimination as it is related to the policies and practice of
medicine. Bioethics is emphasized on the ethical issues that arise in the interactions between
biotechnology, life sciences, politics, medical ethics, theology, law, and philosophy. It
encompasses the study of worthiness related to primary health care. Bioethics addresses a wide
range of human inquiry, ranging from surrogacy, right of the patient to accept or refuse health
care, allocation and dissemination of available resources. The scope of bioethics can be broad to
include cloning, life extension, gene therapy, human genetic engineering and astroethics.
(Johnstone, 2019)
Bioethics at The Bedside
The ethical considerations at the bedside in a clinical setting need to be highly respected.
These ethics dictate that the patient reserves the right to make all the decisions concerning the
delivery and reception of medical care. The client is obligated to accept or refuse the treatment
being offered. The bioethics permit the patient to accept or refuse any kind of clinical
interventions being offered to them even if it is in their best interest. The final decision to engage
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in medical interventions or any other form of therapy is solely the obligation of the client.
(Rothman, 2017)
The ethics surrounding patient care also dictate that the client should receive the
treatment they need regardless of the cost. The care and interventions necessary should be
availed to the patient regardless of any other policy that may state otherwise. As long as the
patient has provided informed consent, they should receive the treatment even if they cannot
afford it. The physicians and nurses are obliged to offer the clients with alternative methods to
achieve their healthcare goals even if those methods are expensive of risky in their
implementation. They should provide the client with all the information they require without
discriminating the capacity of the patient to comply. (Rothman, 2017)
In some instances, the research clinicians may be tempted to withholding treatment to
chart the course of the disease in a client within a hospital setting. This is in its essence illegal
and against the ethical expectations of the clinician. The patient should receive the maximum
therapeutic interventions regardless of the interest the physician may have on the condition the
patient is suffering from. The bioethical considerations dictate that the client be awarded the
highest possible care available and that their needs for attaining desired health outcomes should
always come first. (Rothman, 2017)
The attending physician may feel the need to withhold the diagnosis of other relevant
information concerning the health of the patient with claims that such information could cause
devastating conflict within the client and their family. Information such as the client being
terminally ill or suffering from an incurable disease should not be withheld but conveyed to the
patient and their relatives. Sensitive Information is withheld to prevent harming the client. In
most cases, the physician might feel that their patient will not be able to handle the information
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about their health or their loved ones’ condition. The bioethical considerations state that this
information is conveyed to the proper recipient regardless of the impact it might elicit. The client
should receive all the data necessary concerning their condition and the decision making.
(Rothman, 2017)
During the stay of the patient at the facility, all the interventions aimed at improving their
health should always be done concerning the consent provided the patient. The only procedures
done on this patient should be the ones the client has consented to, for example, if the client has a
history of four C/S operations and is up for a fifth C/S procedure, the physician doing surgery
cannot decide to perform a total hysterectomy because the client has had enough number of C/S
deliveries without informed consent from the client. The surgeon id obligated by the ethical
considerations to perform only those procedures the client consented to. It would be an illegal act
for the surgery to perform any procedures outside what the patient consented to and this can
make them prone to a lawsuit on criminal charges. (Rothman, 2017)
The interventions performed at the clinical setting should always be in line with the
values of the patient. The notion that doctors know best is disregarded by the bioethical
considerations. For example, a clinician may see it fit to put a cancer patient on aggressive
chemotherapy to treat malignancy. However, the client has a choice to make on whether they
should undertake the chemotherapy and have a longer life with poor quality, or refuse the
chemotherapy and live out the few days they have with a good quality life. The issue of quality
and quantity of life is a decision that should rest solely on the client whose body is involved. The
bioethical considerations dictate that the patient has a right to choose how they want to live their
days based on their principles and values. The decision to undertake any medical intervention
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should remain on the hands of the individual client even if the physician thinks it’s a bad
decision. (Rothman, 2017)
Rothman, D. J. (2017). Strangers at the bedside: A history of how law and bioethics transformed
medical decision making. Routledge.
Johnstone, M. J. (2019). Bioethics: a nursing perspective. Elsevier Health Sciences.