HSM 542 You Decide

927 words 4 pages

The dilemma that goes before the ethics committee is that Margie Whitson, age 95, wishes to have her pacemaker deactivated and her physician declined her request based on ethical concerns. By deactivating the pacemaker, the physician feels that patient would not survive. Mrs. Whitson’s physician, Dr. Vijay, is concerned that the deactivation of the pacemaker would be in conflict with the code of conduct and code of ethics as set forth by the American Medical Association, and his moral commitment to the welfare and livelihood of the patient. Therefore, the conflict arises as to whether or not the patient should have the pacemaker deactivate so that she can end her quantity of life and would this action be morally
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The ethics committee views this case as a person on life support with a do not resuscitate order, which has been shown to be ethically and morally acceptable to shut off the life support.
It is recommended that the following three criteria be met before consideration. 1) That the patient be advised that the deactivation of the pacemaker may not end her life immediately and that her health may deteriorate after the deactivation. She can be treated for symptoms of deterioration to alleviate any pain or suffering on an as needed basis. 2) Have a psychiatric evaluation, to determine if her wishes are due to depression that may impact her decision-making capabilities, and if so undergo treatment for a specific time as indicated by the physician. 3) If after the above criteria is met, and the patient still desires that the pacemaker be deactivate, the ethics committee finds in favor of the patients desires and that the pacemaker be immediately deactivate with compassion. (circep.ahajournals.org, 2009), (amednews.com, 2010).

References and Citations:
"Is It Permissible to Shut Off This Pacemaker? | The Center for Bioethics & Human Dignity." Is It Permissible to Shut Off This Pacemaker? | The Center for Bioethics & Human Dignity. N.p., 4 Mar. 2008. Web. 18 July 2013.

O'Reilly, Kevin B. "Heart Devices Can Be Turned off near End of Life." - Amednews.com. N.p., 5 May 2019. Web. 18 July 2013.