Beauchamp And Childress Four Principles Of Medical Ethics

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Another key aspect of professionalism I am going to discuss is medical ethics, Beauchamp and Childress’ four principles of biomedical ethics is the commonly used framework when discussing medical ethics. The four principles include, Respect for Autonomy, beneficence, non -maleficence and Justice. ((Beauchamp and Childress, 2001)
According to Saint Joseph’s university, autonomy refers to the right of a patient to retain control over his or her body. (Joseph, 2017). When dealing with patient and practitioner interactions, improving patient autonomy has become a priority in health service encounters. Furthermore, some healthcare professionals believe that mandatory autonomy should be more emphasized in institutions such as the National Health
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Moreover, the idea of autonomy should be emphasized to enable the less powerful social, cultural and economic individuals of society to be more active in decision making. Whilst, also supporting individuals who may feel abandoned by it. This is why the theory of optional autonomy is preferred as it still gives the patient freedom to choose but puts the professionals’ autonomy at a higher esteem. (Davies and Elwyn, 2007). This conveys that Autonomy is not an all or nothing concept but one where the patients’ needs/values are considered but the expertise of the practitioner respected (Stiggelbout, 2004). In terms of my chosen profession Podiatry, the principle of autonomy is very relevant. Podiatrist and patient relations are often seen as unique because of the professional autonomy the podiatrist has in diagnosis and management of the …show more content…
According to Beauchamp and Childress it is defined as “Practitioners are to act in a way that contributes to the patient's health and well-being and to take care to refrain from doing anything that would cause harm” (Beachamp and Childress 2001). There can often be a struggle to balance the patient’s autonomy with Beneficence as they may have contrasting views with one another. Nonetheless, the healthcare practitioner is required to maintain a high level of knowledge and skill base to care for an individual but to also recognize his or her own limits of professional competence. This term is called informed consent, cases that may be beyond the ability of a healthcare provider, should result in the patient receiving an appropriate referral. (Jacobs, 2014) In podiatry, the short-term relief of the patient is often a priority as discomfort of the foot could result in the patient being immobile. (, 2017). According to Podiatry Now, the principle of Non-maleficence refers to ‘the moral obligation of the healthcare provider not to cause harm to a patient’ (Jacobs, 2014). In some cases, this is avoidable and the healthcare practitioner should use their best judgement as well as the patient’s autonomy to provide the best treatment possible. Lastly, the principle of Justice is simply the equal distribution of available resources and any new treatments

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