How Institutional Conceptual Frameworks Influence Ethical Decision Making
We wrap things up by exploring institutions and groups designed to help ensure that hospital staff at all levels think and act ethically in caring for patients. Accrediting bodies are oversight agencies charged with performing accreditation of hospitals and helping to establish standards for health care delivery. Their aim is to keep the quality of care as high as possible and to make sure the care is delivered ethically. Ethics committees are groups of individuals within hospitals that meet regularly to advise staff on ethically difficult cases and to promote an ethical institutional culture.
Demonstration of Proficiency
By successfully completing this assessment, you will demonstrate your proficiency in the following course competencies and scoring guide criteria:
- Competency 2: Apply sound ethical thinking related to a health care issue.
- Demonstrate sound ethical thinking in applying ethical principles and moral theories to a specific case.
- Competency 3: Analyze ethical issues associated with patient care from the perspectives of various health care professionals.
- Explain professional codes of ethics and apply them in to a specific case.
- Competency 4: Explain the conceptual framework that health care leaders use to make ethical decisions.
- Explain organizational documents like mission and value statements and use them to analyze a case study.
- Explain the role of accrediting bodies and applies this understanding in analyzing a case study.
- Competency 5: Communicate in a manner that is scholarly, professional, and respectful of the diversity, dignity, and integrity of others and is consistent with health care professionals.
- Provides validation and support within written communications by including relevant examples and supporting evidence using APA citations.
- Produce writing with minimal errors in grammar, usage, spelling, and mechanics.
Complete the Case Study: Tonya Archer media activity, which is linked later in this assessment.
Before you begin creating your submission for this assessment, make sure you have worked through the Tonya Archer case study. This will provide the foundational context for the assessment, for which you will be carrying out independent research by using the Internet to complete the following:
- Identify the professional code of ethics for your professional specialty or a specialty that you are interested in.
- With a local hospital in mind (perhaps one you work for), locate the mission, vision, and values statement of that hospital.
After you identify the professional ethics code and the hospital mission, vision, and values statements relevant to your work and interests, it may be useful to complete the following:
- Identify which item in the ethical code you believe is the most important and explain why.
- Name something in the code you would like to see addressed in more depth. Why?
- Which item in the code do you think would be the most challenging to follow and why?
- Does your code make an explicit distinction between what is legal and what is ethical? That is, is the code clear that, while an action may be legal, it may not be ethical?
- Finally, how well does your professional code of ethics align with the mission and values statement of your hospital? Can you imagine a situation in which following one would make it challenging to follow the other?
For this assessment you will apply some concepts we have learned in the course, particularly those relating to the basic principles of health care ethics, professional codes of ethics, and values of health care institutions.
Write a paper that answers the following questions as it relates to the Tonya Archer Case Study:
- What are the most relevant end-of-life issues in health care ethics as they relate to this case?
- What should the hospital do? Should doctors simply keep Tonya on life support, as the parents want? Or, since all medical evidence indicates that Tonya’s brain damage is permanent, should life support be removed?
Support your answer with the following considerations in mind:
- Explain which principles of health care ethics and which moral theory are the best philosophical foundations for your view.
- Is your view supported by your professional code of ethics? If so, explain how. If not, explain what your code gets wrong about a case like this.
- Is your view consistent with the mission statement and values of the hospital you identified in your independent research you conducted to prepare to complete this assessment?
- Would an accrediting body, like the Joint Commission, support your choice? Why or why not?