Ethical and Legal Issues in Healthcare

Topics: Ethics, Morality, Scouting Pages: 3 (1024 words) Published: October 11, 2012
Ethical and Legal Issues in Healthcare

AIU Online – HLTH320
Individual Project Unit 1

I am a paramedic arriving at an emergency scene. A group of scouts have entered a cave that is now filling with water. They were led into the cave by a rather large scoutmaster. Unfortunately, while leading them out of the cave, the scoutmaster somehow managed to get stuck in a narrow opening with only his head and shoulders protruding out. With his upper torso stuck outside the cave, it appears the scoutmaster will survive, but all the boys below will drown if they cannot escape. After I have checked all possible escape routes and have attempted to extricate the scoutmaster, it becomes clear that the only way to save the boys is to sacrifice the scoutmaster and remove him from the hole so the rest of the scouts can escape. What is the correct action for this case? Justify my decision using each of the following: - Duty-oriented reasoning

- Consequence-oriented reasoning
- Virtue-ethics reasoning
Consider what might be the ultimate dilemma of ethics and include the answer to each of the following questions: - What happens when people apply differential standards (all valid) to health care decisions? Explain with supporting examples. - How does an individual determine who is ultimately right when different decisions are reached?

As a paramedic, my duty would be to render aid where aid is needed at any time in any situation. In the scenario, the question is asked of me as to who should I save and whose life would I choose to end to save the other. As a paramedic in a dire situation as this one the decision falls on me and my team to decide whose life is worth more. In this particular issue I would have to think fast and apply the fact that I have an obligation to save as many lives as possible at the same time as protecting the most vulnerable ones above anything and in this my duty is to save...

References: Fremgen, B. (2009). Medical Law and Ethics (3rd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall Health.
Rosenstand, N. (2003). The Moral of the Story:An Introduction to Ethics (4th ed.). New York: NY: McGraw-Hill.
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