Patient Autonomy Case Study

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Ethical Theories- Patient Autonomy Patient autonomy is the right of patients to make decisions regarding their medical care, without the exertion of any undue external influence (Cowley). Physicians express respect for the autonomy of patients by allowing them to make decisions regarding their medication, sometimes, even when these decisions contradict their professional medical advice. . A patient’s verdict regarding his medical care, for as long as he is of sound mind, is traditionally the highest precedence in American bioethics. This emphasis protects patients from being coerced or manipulated, especially by medical professionals or by their trusted loved ones (Cowley). From the case study of Mr. Jones, the patient complains of the discomfort …show more content…
The deontological ethical approach is one of the ethical approaches to medicine, and it helps physicians to deal with medical conflicts and also, with their potential outcome (Mandal, Ponnambath and Parija). This approach is patient-centered, and it concentrates on the greater good of the patient. When it comes to patient autonomy, most physicians are faced with ethical dilemmas as to whether to do what the patient asks of them, or what the family suggests. In such like situations, medical ethics, in the best interest of the patient, should be practiced. As per the deontological approach, the decision made is meant to benefit the patient, even at the expense of the other involved parties. The doctors who choose to follow this approach usually are driven by the special bond which they shall have formed with their patients. Thusly, they must feel the need to take only those actions that are in the best interest of the patient. In the case study, as the patient best understands his conditions and the effects of continued dialysis on his wellbeing, acting in his best interests, the physician must implement his decision, which discontinues his dialysis treatment. For he feels that it would be better for him to stop his dependence on dialysis, despite the fact that this might compromise the status of his health, everyone, including …show more content…
Jones’ decision to discontinue the dialysis, in spite even, of his son’s protestations. Mr. Jones’ right to terminate his dialysis treatment is protected under the provisions of medical autonomy and therefore, the doctor could enforce his wish without having violated any law. The physician should advocate for Mr. Jones’ personal wishes, and this might having to organize appointments only with Mr. Jones, and with his son absent (Verweij and Dawson). The doctor could also try explaining to Mr. Jones’ son the aggressiveness of the dialysis, and how difficult it is for his father to cope. Earlier, Mr. Jones stated that his recent symptoms of distress are due to the discomfort he experiences during these dialysis treatments, which are done twice a week. The best approach would have been to have a conversation with the two parties, aimed at reaching common ground with regards to Mr. Jones’ dialysis treatment. However, the son might continue to disagree with the father’s wish, and this may lead to more friction between the two. Since the patient’s mental state is stable, he can therefore, make sane decisions regarding his overall wellbeing. The discussed ethical theory requires a doctor, as in Mr. Jones case, to act in the best interests of the patient, and in accordance with this same patient’s wishes. By discontinuing Mr. Jones dialysis treatment, the physician will have respected his autonomy. Usually, the doctor

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