Medical Ethics: Patient Wishes vs Doctor Actions

Medical Ethics: Patient Wishes vs Doctor Actions

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A conflict between a doctor who wants to treat his patient a certain way, and a patient who wants to be treated by the doctor the way she wants. The doctor feels the that certain treatment that the patient wants is dangerous and warns the patient that he will pronounce the patient mentally unstable. This is exactly what happened in the case of Mrs. Jackson and Dr. Lowell. The conflict in this entire article is if weather the doctor can, or can not, accuse his patient mental instability to go about the treatment as he sees fit. Is this an invasion of the patient’s wants and desire for a certain way of treatment? or does the doctor have moral rights to do anything and everything even though it is against the patient’s wishes. What justifies as moral and immoral procedure for a doctor to treat his patient.

When faced with this hard dilemma, the article suggests that is use Rule Utilitarianism and Kantian Deontology, to help me solve the problem of weather this justifiable or morally incorrect. Rule Utilitarianism basically reads that “a person ought to act in accordance with the the rule that, if generally followed, would produce the greatest balance of good over evil.”(Mappes & Degrazia, 13) According to this, if anyone faces a moral dilemma, they should always try to sort of do a Cost/Benefits analysis on the outcomes of their actions versus the good that they would cause. So even today when I was debating if or not I should personally write my research essay, or, pay somebody else to write my essay for me, it took me all of 30 second to decides that even though I might not like what i would be doing for the next three to four hours, part of me know that the happiness i would get from it was unparalleled to anything. However, now, if you look at the Kantian Deontology, you will find a lot of things that are different. What this theory of morality says is the outcomes are not at all important, but your duty hold precedence over anything. Similar to Rule Utilitarianism, this theory of morality says that any act, as long as it complies with a rule, is morally justified.

When we think about this problem in a rule utilitarian way, we have to abide by the rules which clearly state that the patient has the final say in what treatment is going to be used on them.

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However, is this really the right decision? This solution to the is problem is basically nullifying the expertise of a doctor in so many ways that his presence might aswell be taken over by a computer. Its not likely that the doctor is going to try to harm the patient in any way. If anyone sits down and thinks about this and you will realize that the face the the doctor has had particular training in this particular field and has an abundance of knowledge in regards to what to offer his patient when certain symptoms exist. Also, please examine the possibility of the patient lack of knowledge in this particular field will make then decide something the is actually wrong for their condition. Generally speaking, most patients do heed to their doctor’s suggestion, but in some cases there are people that feel like they are a better judge of their body then the doctor often end up on the death bed.

Lets think about this in the Kant way, the doctor ordered blood tests for the patient and the patient has to agree to get these test done, however the doctor orders a few other tests that are integral to the patient’s health and does not inform the patient about this. The results come back and they are what the doctor suspected. Cancer. If the doc had not done this, would the patient have ever found out that she had cancer? The answer to that question is a NO. So, even the doctor was not wrong. Because the fact that because of the doctor, the patient was able to find out the fact the she had cancer. Now think about this situation. Should Mrs. Jackson disregard the doctor's suggestion of using chemotherapy instead of the high protein diet with lots of water. The doctor was able to suggest this is Jackson the fact that she had cancer he is also able to suggest to Jackson the type of treatment that would best work for her.

Most of the times this problem is not even valid due to the fact that most patients with cancer usually tend to abide by the will of their doctor however, in recent times, patients neglect think that the doctor has complete knowledge of the situation and the fact that he does have a degree and has had an education. Granted that there are a few doctors that mess up this trust that patients have in them, those types of doctors are maybe one in a million. And most of the doctors that stoop down to such cheap levels to harm their patients are mostly in third world countries, with a blind love of money, however Dr. Lowell is nowhere close to that.

There's a certain policy called informed consent Which basically states that a doctor has to inform his or her patient about the sort of treatment that they are going to be giving their patient and the patient voluntarily has to accept the form of treatment. In Mrs. Jackson's case, Dr. LOL when he first diagnosed Mr. Jackson with cancer had recommended that should go through a dosage of chemotherapy and radiation treatment, Mrs. Jackson's thought that The stage of cancer which she was at was not required to go through chemotherapy and radiation treatment. Hence, this is Jackson did not consent to having this treatment however did start on a highly fiber-based diet including lots of water. Nobody really wants to blame in this situation however I think that Dr. Lowell out shows to follow the more rule utilitarian way of dealing with this issue in abiding by what the patient wants where is pronouncing her mental instability as cause for taking over the power of attorney on her medical decisions. It really is one person's decision on which serious morality they choose to go by however ethically most doctors do Trent tend to prefer the rule utilitarian him because it does coincide most of the time with the rules of society and the rules of their practice.

Nobody can ever say whether the decision that the doctor made was moral or not, but everyone can realize that it is the person’s choice to pick whatever seems fit for him or her top do. This is exactly what happened in the case of Mrs. Jackson and Mr. Lowell. Is the doctor able to , or not able to, accuse his patient mental instability to go about the treatment as he sees fit. Is this an invasion of the patient’s wants and desire for a certain way of treatment? Or does the doctor have moral rights to do anything and everything even though it is against the patient’s wishes. What do you think?

Works Cited Page:

Alexander, Larry. "Deontological Ethics."Stanford University. Stanford University, 21 Nov. 2007. Web. 11 Mar. 2014. .

Hooker, Brad. "Rule Consequentialism."Stanford University. Stanford University, 31 Dec. 2003. Web. 12 Mar. 2014. .

Mappes, Thomas A., and David DeGrazia.Biomedical ethics. 5th ed. Boston: McGraw-Hill, 2001. Print.


"Sarvodaya." Sarvodaya. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Mar. 2014. .

Jason and Robert Scott. Bioethics Lecture. Tempe: ASU, 2001. Print.

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