Healthcare EthicsNovember 21, 2018 2018-11-21 10:45
Healthcare Ethics: A dwindling Practice
Healthcare ethics revolves around providing care and treatment to patient by imparting medical benefit which is imperative for patients well being. Due to full disclosure policies exposing intimate details can make an individual vulnerable thus ethics helps in protecting both the patients and even doctors a certain amount of protection. However its far from the truth these days. Poor ethical conduct and increasing litigation against the healthcare professionals is the talk of the hour. These are primarily because of the growing awareness amongst individuals and healthcare professionals flouting rules to cut cost and increase profit. Medical ethics need to be incorporated in curriculum as per cultural, socioeconomic and geographical background. However we need to analyze the knowledge and attitude of healthcare practitioners regarding ethical practices.
Decoding the Ethics
Ethical codes primarily cover widespread policies which are forbidding disclosure of information, expected conduct and attitudes of healthcare providers which are in the interest and benefit of the patient. Ethical codes are primarily based on four principles: autonomy, non-maleficence, beneficence, and justice and are seen as cornerstones of moral ground. These ethical codes are not binding when they are in conflict with similar or stronger duties where health becomes a primary concern. Healthcare ethics committees or hospital ethics committees help in analyzing, orienting and supporting healthcare workers to deal with ethical aspects in a clinical setting. Ethics consultation is an ethics body which helps in analyzing, and solving ethical conflicts which arise in the clinical setting among patient, healthcare worker and patients family. Though, usually healthcare ethics committee handles both the ethical framework as well as ethical consultation in most countries. They also have the responsibility of maintaining, teaching and policy making with respect to ethics to ensure there is no lapse from the structural or even economic aspect. It should be borne in mind that healthcare ethics is not the same as research ethics. Research ethics is involved keeping in mind that research protocols are maintained specially an obligation to the subjects involved in research whereas healthcare ethics are confined to a patient doctor equation in a clinical setup.
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