Chemical Restraint In A Nursing Home

1646 Words 7 Pages
Placing a loved one in a nursing home may be the most difficult and heartbreaking decision one will have to make. The reasons for admitting someone into a nursing home is usually because they cannot provide care for themselves, their caregiver is no longer capable, or they require full-time medical attention. Peace is typically found when one realizes it is the best option for the individual and there will be a quality health care team to support and comfort them.
Susan was admitting into a long-term care centre because she could no longer wash or feed herself, and would consistently get lost and forget things. She was sad to be admitted because she felt like it was the end of the line for her. After a few weeks, she was diagnosed with dementia
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The primary ethical principles that are violated are respect for human dignity, autonomy, and non-maleficence. Human dignity cannot be relinquished during illness, disability or approaching death; everyone is entitled to all their rights and freedoms despite their health status. The side effects of the medication can actually cause the symptoms they are supposed to be eradicating. Chemical restraints often leave the individual feeling confused, agitated, and physically sedentary. Robert Harris was described as energetic and lively before entering a nursing home in California (Bisnar, 2011). During the transition he acted like a “regular grumpy old man”, the doctors then categorized him as psychotic and needed to be chemical restrained. The medication made him very confused and drowsy; he stopped eating and drinking as much and lost 10% of his body mass within a month. This example demonstrates the harmful repercussions of improper use of antipsychotics. Respect for autonomy is also violated when using chemical restraints, the resident should be able to make choices for themselves. Everyone is entitled to the right of self-determination; and if they are not cognitively able to do so, then the family’s opinion should be considered and they should always be informed. The non-maleficence principle “to do no harm” is violated as chemical restraints cause physical harm to the residents. Chemical restraints have been proven to increase risk of falls, muscle weakness, incontinence, malnutrition, and increase dependence in activities of daily living (Gastmans & Milisen,

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