DH 46: Legal and Ethical Responsibilities
Lygia Jolley, RDH, BA
January 2, 2018
INTRODUCTION Dental hygienist as a health care provider is granted special rights and responsibilities to the patient by education and skills. As we are providing educational, preventive and therapeutic services to the public, patients are seeking the best care from a professional and ethical practitioner. Ethical dilemmas will be part of the dental hygienist’s daily job, as it has situations with varied ethical considerations and complexities. This essay will discuss the ethical issue and the importance of following standard precautions to treat patients who have communicable disease.
Unethical and …show more content…
Ethical issues in dentistry have become a passive aspect of clinical concepts which has greatly caught the attention of many people. Presumably, health providers have advised taking extra precautions when handling delicate or chronic conditions which can pose immediate effects on their lives. Regarding the above-presented case, there are principles and standard precautions which are universally recommended by American Dental Association. Dental providers are through the code of ethic issued required to ensure that they remain morally sound in treating and interacting with patients. The dental hygiene student has been aware of this patient’s situation and has always practiced standard precautions. However, the dental assistant in the same office advised the hygiene student to take extra protection when treating this HIV-positive patient. The principles and code of conducts demand that all people are subject to equal treatment and thus not attending hepatitis C in fears of contracting the diseases is not regarded as an ethical action and it is in total violation of ethical rules. Based on professional guidelines provided for every profession, especially in this case, all workers are advised to take standard precautions which can help to reduce the rate of infections to protect both the dental providers and patients. Conversely, if the hygienist fails to follow the guidelines being issued by the assistant to put on coats before attending to patients, …show more content…
The researchers objected to exclusively focus on if the dental providers are willing to treat patients with communicable infectious diseases (PCID) equally and carefully. The study was in form of a questionnaire, which topic was regarding the factors which could potentially affect how the dental students treat a PCID. As a result, the study showed that most of the student make no difference when talking to a patient with communicable disease, while the stress lever increases when they discover that they have to treat the patients. As far as the education part goes, all the dental students were aware of the ethical code and health- related law that dental provider had to be justices and fairness to every patient regardless their social background, economic status, medical history and religions. On the other hand, many of students refused service based on the assumption that protection against HIV was not effective enough and requires double layer of protection such as secondary gloves and disposable gowns and shield mask. Being self-aware about HIV cased many student lacks concentration on patient service which was the base our ethical goal. Based on the study, there is an alternative relationship between dental students and PCID, which is education. The more education