In this case “Essentials of Nursing Law and Ethics” the president of the hospital is faced with two weighty issues with a zero-sum approach. The implication here is that whichever the decision was taken, the president is bound to violate certain elements of medical ethics…
The ethical principle of beneficence would require the hospital through its president to act in the best interest of the patient (Westrick and Dempski, 2008). Beneficence is based on the conventional role of a healthcare professional to be the Good Samaritan first before being a paid professional. This principle views a physician from a compassionate perspective, as an individual charged with performing acts of kindness, comfort care, charity, and mercy with the best interest of the patient at heart. As the hospital’s president, I face the ethical dilemma of performing the surgery to safeguard the greater benefit for the patient or to send him back to his home country to seek the treatment there.
The principle of beneficence is reinforced by the principle of nonmaleficence, which acts as a warning to medical professionals not to engage in acts that may be of harm to the patient. A healthcare professional is expected to act for the better of the patient’s condition regardless of the financial implications involved. This principle would ordinarily require me as the president of the hospital to admit the patient for the surgery and look into the issue of finances thereafter.
The two principles of beneficence and nonmaleficence over-emphasize the benefit of the patient at the expense of the financial obligations owed to the hospital. However, the real-life situation like the case at hand would require a balance between compassion for the patient and responsibility for the efficient running of the hospital (Westrick and Dempski, 2008). The patient has clearly indicated incapability to settle medical bills to the hospital, which implies a strain on the resources of the hospital and may eventually hamper quality care to other patients. ...
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