Ethical Issues Paper

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Running head: Ethical Issue

In healthcare there are various ethical dilemmas that nurse’s face daily. During such times it is important that the healthcare organization in which you work for has a risk management team that helps staff as well as families cope with these situations and make the transition less painful and traumatic for all parties involved. We as healthcare providers must remember the importance of respecting the beliefs and decisions of others, even when they are different from our own.

The ethical dilemma that I was faced with while practicing bedside nursing was a situation in which a family could not decide whether or not to stop or continue dialysis on their mother despite her failing health. This particular patient was a seventy-three year old African American female who had various health problems that included end-stage renal disease, diabetes, hypertension, congestive heart failure (CHF) and multiple CVA’s. This woman had been on hemodialysis for three years and had generally lived a healthy lifestyle controlled by medication and diet. The ethical dilemma occurred when she was admitted into the hospital with congestive heart failure (CHF) and suffered a CVA. She was unconscious for several days with a dangerously high blood pressure. The physician’s that were caring for her studied her condition very carefully. They never rushed into anything in regards to her treatment. It was one morning during hemodialysis that she suffered a severe CVA that left her with very little brain activity, which was shown on her EEG. The neurologist talked with the family on several occasions informing them that this was a severe stroke that affected the brain stem area of the patient’s brain, which ultimately left her with very little brain activity. The family could never really grasp a complete understanding as to how serious their mothers condition was and the fact that she would never recover from this CVA like she had recovered...
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