The Importance Of Beneficence In Health Care

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Everyone has the right to freedom of choice. Everyone has the right to autonomy, human dignity and self determination. It is the patients human right to decide what is best for them regarding their own health care and future health care and It is the health care professionals duty of care to respect and adhere to all patient choices and decisions (Entwistle, Carter, Cribb & McCaffery, 2010). Giving the patient freedom of choice enhances the patients independence. The principle of respect for autonomy is an extremely important guideline in healthcare as It enables the patient to not only make their own decisions, but to act with intention, with understanding, and without influence (Entwistle, Carter, Cribb & McCaffery, 2010). Respecting patients …show more content…
It is the health care professionals duty of care to act in beneficence and non-maleficence. To act in the way that best benefits the patient and to do no harm (“beneficence”, 2014). According to Entwistle, Carter, Cribb & McCaffery, (2010), In some circumstances it can be difficult for the health care professional to balance respect for autonomy with beneficence. The health care professional needs to respect the patients choices and decisions but they also need to act in the way that puts the best interests of the patient first, for instance, a patient who has a lung infection refuses to take antibiotics. It is the Doctors duty of care to provide the patient with antibiotics but it is the patients autonomous right and choice to refuse the treatment, or in the case of euthanasia, the health care professional must respect the patients choice, but uethanasia is illegal in this Contry, therefore the health care professional is unable abide by their wishes (Entwistle, Carter, Cribb & McCaffery, …show more content…
In the health care context, paternalism is an ethical concept or idea where a health care professional makes a medical decision on behalf of their patient, for their own good (Buchanan, 2008). Grill (2012), describes paternalism as “benevolent interference with a person’s liberty or autonomy”. Grill (2012) also explains that “benevolent because it aims at promoting or protecting a person’s good, and interference because it restricts a person’s liberty without his consent”. Paternalism can be justified when a person is incapable of making their own decisions, for instance, if a patient is suffering from an incapacitating sickness or disease, displaying behaviours that are self-destructive, irrational and that could potentially result in harm to themselves or others (Kopelman, 2004). Health care professionals are unable to restrict patient liberty quite simply because they disagree with a competent patients decisions, there has to be a purpose that warrants a need for paternalistic interventions (Kopelman, 2004). In an emergency situation where the patient is unconscious and unable to consent to treatment or communicate their wishes, and there is no surrogate decision maker available, the healthcare professional, such as a paramedic, is required to take a paternalistic approach and provide treatment irrespective of whether

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