When one initially chooses a career path, one rarely looks at all the negatives that may be associated with that choice. Most career paths have some negatives associated with the field, but few face the moral dilemmas associated with modern healthcare. Those who choose to be in the healthcare profession today are faced with moral and ethical dilemmas that would make King Solomon tear his hair out. In many cases, doctors, and sometimes nurses, are faced with life and death decisions without the benefit of knowing the patient’s, or the patient’s family’s, wishes. However, aside from those tragic times when a patient’s wishes are unknown, healthcare professionals must always put their own morals aside, and act solely on the wishes of the patient.
Societal issues faced in the modern world are myriad and volatile, complex and confusing. Yet, every sentient adult on the planet has, with or without the benefit of valid data on the issue, a definite opinion of the ‘right and the wrong’ of any given situation. Therein lies the problem, as human nature or perhaps ego, dictates that one assumes one’s own logic and feelings to be correct, and those of any other opinion to be incorrect. Healthcare professionals are no different. It is true that perhaps because of the extensive education required of healthcare professionals, many healthcare professionals are better informed on many issues and more likely to be tolerant of opposing viewpoints, however this is not always the case.
Case in point, in recent months the world has come to know Dr. Ben Carson, a neurosurgeon, who has thrown his hat in the ring for the presidency of the United States. Dr. Carson who says he believes that parents should be able to choose ...
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...h so few directives or legislation to guide them. Few practitioners would say that they were fully aware of all the moral and ethical strains they would face when choosing to start a career in healthcare. Without minimizing a physician’s humanity, it is a truism that healthcare workers work as a tool to aid patients by either preventing or treating diseases. The fact that they can take or save a life does not give healthcare workers any dominion over that life.
It thus becomes not only logical, but also imperative, that healthcare professionals should never impose their own ethics on a patient, but rather follow a strict discipline of compliance with a patient’s wishes. The adoption of this policy would limit the healthcare professional’s ethical liability, for it is far more unethical to force one’s own will on another, than to set aside one’s own personal morality.
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