Patient Safety - the Ethical Imperative

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Running head:  Patient safety: the ethical imperative
Patient safety: the ethical imperative


Chaini C. Demas

A Paper
Submitted in partial fulfillment of the
requirements for HSA 515
Healthcare Law, Policy and Ethics
Strayer University

Summer 2010

Patient safety: the ethical imperative

Patient safety is and should always be the most important aspect a health care provider considers. The article, Patient safety: the ethical imperative, reports errors found in a 3-year study that was carried out in 29 small, rural hospitals in several western states. The study established that most mistakes fall within the globe of nursing practice. According to the study, physicians, administrators, and nurses themselves place patient safety as chiefly a nursing responsibility. If this is so, does this mean that physicians and administrators are not to be held responsible for patient safety? As such, this paper will evaluate the importance of ethics and morality of physicians, administrators, and nurses in the event of an error. Nurses are very important individuals within the health care field. Physicians rely on nurses to carry out orders in a timely and precise manner. Nurses are the foundation of the health care profession because they are not only there to provide relief and concern. They are also role models for good health care. Because physicians are often in a hurry they don’t have the time needed to establish a proper relationship with their patients. Therefore, nurses are used to assess patients and communicate imperative information to physicians on behalf of patients to ensure patients receive proper care. Nurses should never hide a mistake from physicians or patients. Physicians owe the duty of providing medical treatment to their patients. Physicians and patients have a relationship that is built on trust and confidence. Patients expect physicians to be diligent, to inform...
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