Ethical Implications in Nursing

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To Transfuse or Not Transfuse?
DaNece Curtis

To Transfuse or Not Transfuse?
The books of Genesis and Acts in the Bible hold passages that Jehovah’s Witnesses feel are key in their beliefs on not receiving blood transfusions (Ethics, 2009). For the medical community this is a difficult issue to deal with and relate to. Saving lives is what healthcare is about and blood transfusions assist in that. For some, however, blood transfusions are not an option. Although denial of life saving measures such as blood transfusions may not be ideal for members of healthcare, it is an important ethical issue and belief for some. With that being said, it is important as a leader in healthcare to have a better understanding of this in order to advocate for the patient, communicate the patients views, and provide excellent patient care. There are over one million Jehovah’s Witnesses in the United States (Watchtower, 2012). Ethics and values play an important role in their life. Refusal of blood transfusions is an important belief. They relate their refusal of blood products to Bible passages and feel that to go against God’s word is a sin. Jehovah’s witnesses believe that eternal life in God’s kingdom is dependent on obedience upon strict laws (jehovah'switness.org, 2012). Going against Bible passages related to blood would ultimately go against God’s word, resulting in not entering his kingdom. Ethics, values, beliefs, and religion is what molds people into who they are as a unique person. Not everyone believes the same things or in the same ways. As leaders in healthcare it is important to first realize that not everyone believes the same things or in the same ways. What is important to one person isn’t necessarily important to another. Also it is essential to be open- minded and be the patient advocate and insure they receive care that does not compromise their beliefs or values. The role of the healthcare leader is simple, educate the staff and encourage them to reach...
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