Using the steps outlined in the decision-making models in your readings, select one ethical decision-making model and use the model to analyze the case provided.
Ethical Decision Making Model 1
It is helpful to use a decision-making model for ethical dilemmas in order to guide one’s decision making from an objective, cognitive perspective, rather than a purely affective or emotional perspective. Uustal (1993) proposed the following steps to guide one’s ethical decision making. Uustal’s model not only follows the nursing process, but also includes values clarification when applying an ethical decision-making model.
Step 1: Identify the problem. Ask:
· Who are people involved in the dilemma?
· How are they related or interrelated?
· What is involved in the situation?
After answering the above questions, identify the ethical dilemma and make a concise statement of the problem. Then, state the conflict in values.
Step 2: State your values and ethical position related to the problem.
· How does the issue fit with your personal values?
· Are they congruent or incongruent?
Step 3: Take into consideration factors that relate to the situation and generate alternatives for resolving the dilemma.
Step 4: Examine and categorize the alternatives. Identify those that are consistent and inconsistent with your personal values.
If the most appropriate alternative is inconsistent with your personal values, another provider may be needed to facilitate resolution. This eliminates bias and preserves your own ethical integrity.
Step 5: Predict all possible outcomes for those acceptable alternatives.
Consider physical, psychological, social, and spiritual consequences, both short-term and long-term.
· What might happen if you follow Alternative A?
· What might happen if you follow Alternative B?
Step 6: Prioritize acceptable alternatives. List them in order from the most acceptable to the least acceptable.
Step 7: Develop a plan of action utilizing the list of acceptable alternatives. Determine what you are going to do about this dilemma.
Step 8: Implement the plan.
Step 9: Evaluate the action taken. Ask yourself the following questions:
· Did I do the right thing?
· Were my actions ethical?
Ethical Decision Making Model 2
Step 1: get the story straight—gather relevant information
The first step in informed decision making is to gather as much information as possible
Step 2: identify the type of ethical problem
Step 3: use ethics theories or approaches to analyze the problem(s)
Step 4: explore the practical alternatives
Step 5: complete the action
Step 6: evaluate the process and outcome
Case Scenario: A 6-year-old develops a high fever accompanied by violent vomiting and convulsions while at school. The child is rushed to a nearby hospital. The attending physician makes a diagnosis of meningitis and requests permission to initiate treatment from the parents. The child’s parents are divorced. The mother, who is not the biological parent of the child, has primary custody. She is a Christian Scientist who insists that no medical treatment be offered for religious reasons. The biological father, who resides in another state, is also contacted. He insists that treatment be given and seeks independent consultation from another physician.
Assignment: In a formal, written paper of 800-1,200 words, answer the following questions:
1. What is the ethical dilemma here?
2. Describe the decision-making model you selected from your readings.
3. How would you resolve this dilemma using the model?
4. Include, at the end of your paper, a 200-word dialog in which you explain your decision to the family. (Remember to use language that the family would understand).
A minimum of three references must be used.