Ethics refers to standards of moral judgment and professional conduct. Nurses are accountable to patients, the public, employers and the profession as a whole. It is imperative that they have a thorough understanding of the various ethical, legal and professional issues they face during their careers. The most common reaction to a perceived violation of ethical standards in the health profession is an act of negligence and malpractice, i.e. the act, omission or commitment of the nurse or physician.xx Four elements are required: duty, legal duty to the patient – Nurses must provide the appropriate level of care provided by other nurses in this area of practice. Second, a breach of this obligation by failing to meet the required standard. Third, causation, which is a factual link between the nurse`s action and the harm suffered by the patient. Finally, damages, which are a monetary payment intended to compensate the patient for the damage. xxi The patient must have sustained physical, economic or emotional injuries. The dereliction of duty test refers to the reasonable judgments of “responsible medical reports” when persons with special abilities or skills are judged to a higher standard for that profession and not to the standard for ordinary persons.xxii The standard of care is also higher for professionals and, although the primary duty rests with the physician, Nurses can also be held accountable, if they act on the instructions of their employer.xxiii The nurse, even if supervised, must exercise her own skills and competencies as a nurse of the same level and experience would be expected to do.xxiv Our Code and Standards continue to support you by providing you with key principles in addition to the ethical frameworks that normally guide your practice. that you should follow. Autonomy and therefore consent can be “effective” both legally and ethically depending on the context and situation of the patient. From a health care perspective, autonomy may or may not be practical to exclude liability from litigation and avoid ethical criticism that is weighed against the patient`s best interests.xxxv It may also be that the patient does not have the necessary decision-making capacity, in which case caregivers may treat the patient without consent.

This is generally based on the principle of necessity, and the circumstances in which it is permitted are limited.xxxvi It must be shown that it is necessary to treat the patient and, moreover, the need to act was associated with the practical impossibility of communicating with the patient, and the action taken was that which a reasonable person would take in the same circumstances, whether it acted in the best interests of the patient. xxxvii In addition, if the caregiver acts out of necessity, he must prove that he did not do more than was immediately necessary and in the best interest of the patient.xxxviii The question of what is immediately necessary, what is not taken further action and which violates the patient`s autonomy is not regulated by law and remains an ethical dilemma in nursing practice. The purpose of this essay is to describe a practice situation that involved an ethical or legal dilemma and to reflect feelings during this period. To allow reflection, the Bouds model is reflectio. Ethics refers to standards of moral judgment and professional conduct. Nurses are accountable to patients, the public, employers and the profession as a whole. It is imperative that they have a thorough understanding of the various ethical, legal and professional issues they face during their careers. There are three main duties for nurses, among many others, which are the duty of autonomy, confidentiality and the duty of care to all patients.

i These duties are complemented by the principles of charity, that is: to promote or do good and to act in the best interest of patients, and non-malevolence, that is, to avoid harm. ii These are professional obligations that become legal obligations if laws or guidelines are violated in the course of practice. In 2001, a study found that there was a need to provide more guidance on ethical dilemmas within the health professions following the increase in the number of legal cases and inquiries from the public.iii As a result, various Clinical Ethics Boards (CECs) and Research Ethics Boards (REBs) have been established in the UK to provide comprehensive ethical support. Ever-changing values in the fields of health, behavioral sciences and society mean that physicians must be aware of new ethical issues for the medical sector and learn how to respond appropriately. The Council of Nurses and Midwives (2008) states that you, as a nurse, are personally responsible for acts or omissions and must be able to justify your behaviour. If the NMC deems the behaviour unacceptable, it has the authority to revoke the registration of nurses. Nurses are individually legally and professionally responsible for their own standards of care and should only practice within the scope of their skills and abilities and know their limitations. Patients have the legal right to refuse tests, procedures and treatments. Nurses must always respect the patient`s wishes, even if they reject something that is beneficial to their health. Consent provides nurses with a justification for treatment, and if a nurse touches a patient or has performed a procedure without valid consent, she can be prosecuted for assault (UK Clinical Ethics Network 20101).

In England, a patient is considered a minor if he or she is under 18 years of age, although in Scotland the required age is less than 16 years of age. In England and Wales, the Family Law Reform Act 1969 provides that a person aged 16 or 17 has a legal right to consent to treatment; Under article 8, a minor is considered to be an adult aged 16 and over and has statutory rights deriving from this category. Consent must be effective, and parental consent is not required, except in certain procedures such as organ donation and non-therapeutic research.