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This essay is about legal and ethical considerations in context to Australian healthcare standards. Responsibility for care is a fundamental aspect of nursing and many healthcare professionals see it as an important part of their professional responsibility. This specific study will entail in relation to the case study of Doris. The given case study in this context is related to Doris who is an old lady and lives with her husband Peter. This essay will relate to the circumstances faced by Doris in regard to the violation of Australian Charter of Health Care Rights, Consent, confidentiality and privacy. Further, how breach of duty of care, medical negligence and the violation of bioethical principles has been conferred will also be discussed in details.
Australian Charter of Healthcare Rights portrays what healthcare users, or somebody they care for, can expect while entailing healthcare services. As stated by Duckett (2018), these rights apply to all individuals in all spots where medicinal services are given in the nation Australia. The case of Doris is no exception; it can be conferred from the charter that her rights had been violated. This incorporates open and private emergency clinics, day system administrations, general practice and other networks of wellbeing administrations. In this context it can be conferred that the rights in accordance to the Australian Charter as been breached. It can be said so as Doris was not given the proper care and assistance by the healthcare specialists. Safety of the healthcare user is very important to be adhered in relation to the charter. What happened in this case is just the opposite. The health care specialist further deteriorated the health condition of Doris.
In context to the case of Doris, it can be well stated that no medical confidentiality and privacy was adhered amid Peter and the healthcare surgeon. As stated by Müller et al. (2019), medical confidentiality is a set of rules that limits access to data examined between an individual and their healthcare experts. But in this case no information or data was provided to Doris or Peter. Respect for privacy needs be exhibited while guaranteeing that dangers will be appropriately tended and overseen and that the service is very much safe for the healthcare user. In this particular case study, the surgeon did not discuss any health issue related to the condition of Doris. Consent is a very important attribute in healthcare.
In accordance to the Consent Law, it is very well wrought out that an individual can appropriately practice this privilege and chooses to either agree to or deny specific clinical treatment, the person needs to have a sensible comprehension of what that medical treatment includes. As that data can just originate from the treating healthcare proficient, it is a part of their obligation to give a legitimate clarification of the clinical conduct and the dangers in question. In this regard, Section 15 of the Consent to Medical Treatment and Palliative Care Act 1995 (SA) expresses that the specialists have an obligation to disclose to healthcare users, about the nature, outcomes and dangers of projected clinical treatment, the feasible results of not taking the cure and any elective treatment or strategies that may sensibly be measured in the conditions of the case.
Mental illness is characterized under the Mental Health Act 2014 as a medical condition where an individual's idea, state of mind, discernment or memory is essentially disturbed. In the case of Peter, he had already informed the healthcare professional about his mental condition (Austlii.edu.au, 2014). The healthcare professional needed to take this issue in context to serious grounds. Since Bert was like their son with no disabilities, the healthcare professional needed to discuss this issue to him (Lawhandbook.sa.gov, 2020). The consent taken by the healthcare specialists were inappropriate.
In the case of Doris what happened is that when Doris was confused and agitated, did not know where she was or what had happened to her. She was admitted to the orthopaedic ward and Peter was with Doris when the orthopaedic surgeon came to see Doris. The doctor did not explain the proposed procedure and Peter was asked to sign the blank consent form for Doris. This act is something that is a violation of laws and rights. It was not an act of valid consent. Informed consent is the procedure whereby a healthcare user settles on a deliberate choice about their clinical consideration with information and comprehension of the advantages and potential dangers included (Racgp.org.au, 2020).
A healthcare user should possibly consent or make an agreement to the proposed treatment or methodology only if the individual has been given adequate data including the advantages, related dangers and elective administration alternatives, so they can settle on a proper choice about their own medicinal services (Racgp.org.au, 2020). In this case neither Doris nor Peter was informed of the consequences or risks regarding the operation.
In this regard it can also be noted that before Doris went to the operating theatre, Peter and Doris’s neighbor, Bert, came to visit Doris. Bert expressed to the healthcare attendant that he had lived close to Doris and Peter for more than 25 years and in context to the past two years he had dropped in consistently to perceive how they were. He said that he consistently helped them with their shopping, took care of their tabs and that they thought of him as their unofficial child. Bert said that he would be glad to sign consent if necessary. The nurse went off duty without stating anything to him.
In this context, it is very evident that Doris was breached as per the duty of care. Everybody has the privilege to anticipate professionalism and care from their medicinal services provider. Suffering of medical negligence can be very troubling and distressing (Morris, Chawla & Francis, 2019). By and large, healthcare services in Australia are of a very high standard; nonetheless, at certain circumstances things turn out badly. Inability to give sensible clinical consideration to a healthcare user is called medical negligence. It might be because of the result of a miss conduct in context to the specialist, emergency clinic, hospital or other healthcare proficients. In this case the breach has been pertinent as the orthopaedic surgeon decided to take the afternoon off duty to play golf and delegated Doris's operation to a junior doctor to perform alone. Due to his inexperience, the junior doctor significantly injured Doris's hip and she suffered continual pain and decreased mobility following the procedure.
The case of Doris is subjected to Medical malpractice. As stated by Meyerson (2017), medical malpractice is occurred when a medical expert fails to carry out their job to their best of the abilities and subjects harm to the healthcare user. Many of the time, the term medical negligence is used to mean medical malpractice. By meaning, medical malpractice or negligence is an act or oversight by a medical expert that deviates from the conventional standard of medical care. In this context it can be also referred that negligence alone does not grasp adequate ground intended for a case in legal terms. As soon as negligence subjects the cause of a damage or death of a healthcare user then there is often legal foundation in favor of a medical malpractice case to be subjected.
The four key elements in this context that is very much important for the case of Doris are a) Duty: As soon as a healthcare expert and a healthcare user begin a private relationship, the healthcare expert has a duty to subject the most effective plan of possible treatment. This is the part of duty which has not been adhered for the case of Doris. In cases of medical negligence, specialists frequently overlook increasingly effective ways to deal with mending or reject new strategies for medications, b) Breach: When each specialist moves on from clinical school, they guarantee to the Hippocratic Oath. The Hippocratic Oath expresses that specialists will satisfy their obligation to give the most ideal treatment to their healthcare user.
At the point when a specialist neglects to satisfy their obligation, they break their agreement, c) injury: Injury is the third component required in a medical negligence case to make it feasible in the court. This is frequently called "causation" in the law world. Injury, or causation, alludes to the genuine harm caused to a healthcare by a specialist. With the end goal for injury to happen in the domain of clinical negligence, it must fall under two parts: real reason and proximate reason.
As such, the harm needs to be an immediate aftereffect of a specialist who has breached in their obligation to give clinical consideration. d) damages: The last component in context to medical negligence includes damages. Damages are subjected to financial recompense for the harm brought about by a specialist's carelessness. All together for a clinical negligence case to position up in the court of law, the injury or damage caused needs to have the option to be remedied by cash. For example, in this case all the above four elements have been subjected (Cockburn & Butler, 2018).
There are Four Principles that were devised by Beauchamp and Childress was measured by many as the standard concrete framework from which to consider ethical circumstances in medicine (Beauchamp, 2016). In this particular case it has been observed that the four principles have not been adhered in the case of Doris. The four principles are Autonomy: The right for a healthcare user to make his or her own choice, Beneficence: The principle of acting in context to the best interest of others, Justice: A notion that subjects fairness and equality amid individuals and Non-maleficence: The principle that “above all, does no harm,” as stated in the Hippocratic Oath (Beauchamp & Childress, 2019). In this case autonomy was not adhered as Doris was not able to make her own decision regarding her health.
She in fact did not know what exactly had happened to her. Beneficence on the other hand was not subjected by the healthcare specialist as he did take interest into informing Peter or Doris about the surgery. Negligence in this case also occurred when the senior RN did nothing to the case of Doris (Riaz, Khan & Jafar, 2017). The act of the healthcare surgeon was very degrading as he preferred to play golf over the surgery of Doris. Non-maleficence subjects to not harm the healthcare user at any cost, but what happened in the case of Doris is totally the opposite. Justice was not attained by Doris as her condition deteriorated with the junior surgeon operating her.
In conclusion it can be stated that healthcare is a very significant part of medication and health. The case of Doris is an example which can be remembered as an act of medical negligence It is very important the negligence in context to healthcare is not adhered by any means. Health care ethics are imperative for each individual who subjects some aspect of health care. Everybody who provides some aspect of health care needs to recognize the ethical responsibilities and their limits. Similarly, each individual who interacts with health care needs also needs to understand his or her responsibilities and rights regarding to ethics of heath care.
Austlii.edu.au (2014), Mental Health Act 2014, from: http://www5.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/vic/consol_act/mha2014128/index.html [Retrieved On: 12th may 2020]
Beauchamp, T. L. (2016). The principles of biomedical ethics as universal principles. In ISLAMIC PERSPECTIVES ON THE PRINCIPLES OF BIOMEDICAL ETHICS: Muslim Religious Scholars and Biomedical Scientists in Face-To-Face Dialogue with Western Bioethicists (pp. 91-119).
Beauchamp, T., & Childress, J. (2019). Principles of Biomedical Ethics: Marking Its Fortieth Anniversary.
Cockburn, T., & Butler, D. A. (2018). Medical negligence. In Health Law in Australia [3rd Ed.]. Thomson Reuters Australia.
Duckett, S. (2018). Good medical practice needs to be founded on patients’ rights, from: https://grattan.edu.au/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Grattan-Code-of-conduct-sub.pdf [Retrieved On: 12th may 2020]
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Meyerson, D. (2017). Medical negligence determinations, the “right to try,” and expanded access to innovative treatments. Journal of bioethical inquiry, 14(3), 385-400.
Morris, C., Chawla, G., & Francis, T. (2019). Clinical negligence: Duty and breach. British dental journal, 226(9), 647-648.
Müller, E. C., Zimmermann, J., Menzdorf, L., & Kühne, C. A. (2019). Medical confidentiality. Der Unfallchirurg, 122(9), 719.
Racgp.org.au (2020), Informed consent, from: https://www.racgp.org.au/download/Documents/PracticeSupport/informedconsentinfosheet.pdf [Retrieved On: 12th may 2020]
Riaz, S., Khan, E. A., & Jafar, T. (2017). Ethics in health care settings: practices of healthcare professionals and perceptions of patients regarding informed consent, confidentiality and privacy at two tertiary care hospitals of Islamabad, Pakistan. Journal of Ayub Medical College Abbottabad, 29(3), 472-476.
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