Ethical Principles and Codes of Practice Can Provide Guidance in Day-to-Day Practice. Analyse Peter’s Situation in the Case Study and Come to a Conclusion About What Would Be an Appropriate Response.

2733 words 11 pages
Ethical principles and codes of practice can provide guidance in day-to-day practice. Analyse Peter’s situation in the case study and come to a conclusion about what would be an appropriate response.

This essay will analyse the ethical principles and code of practice in relation to the case study of Peter, a man suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and will suggest a course of action for Peter’s situation based upon the application of these principles and the code. It will do this by examining the term ‘ethics’ and will focus on four ethical principles found to be relative to the kinds of ethical issues and challenges met within health and social care settings, these will be applied to the case study.
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Autonomy is the freedom to act as a person wishes, to be able to make decisions about their own life and not to be controlled by others. The case study points out that Peter ‘unhappily’ left his home, at the request of his family to move into Parkside Manor, indicating that Peter had no control over this situation. This lack of right to choose where he lives, directly impinges on Peter’s ability to be autonomous and make reasoned informed choices. Beauchamp and Childress (2009) identify two areas necessary for autonomy: Liberty or independence from control and Agency, the capacity for deliberate action (K217, Book 4, p39). When applying this principle to Peter’s case, it could be argued that a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s limits his capabilities to make decisions for himself, limiting capacity for intentional action and so reducing Peter’s ability to function as an autonomous individual. The codes of practice for social care workers (2010) state: ‘a social care worker must respect the rights of service users while seeking to ensure that their behaviour does not harm themselves or others’ (General Social Care Council, 2010, p9, 4.2). This causes a conflict of interest between Peter’s rights to act in a manner that he chooses and that of the other residents, who deserve to be able to move freely about the home without the risk of being upset or distressed by Peter’s actions. Staff may wish to take steps to minimise the potential risk of Peter’s behaviour causing mental harm


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