Posted: January 21st, 2021
Critical Issues in Healthcare writing assignment
write a two-page paper with your reaction to the following scenario
“The hospital has asked you to be part of a resource allocation committee. This committee has to decide which four out of ten critical patients will receive immediate life-saving surgery; without surgery, all will die.
This hospital only has resources for four patients. There is terrible weather and flooding; a hurricane is coming, so none of the patients can be transferred to another hospital.”
What criteria (age, social standing, the benefit to society, lifestyle, degree of sickness, etc.) would you use to make this decision?
Your answer should be well-formed using the APA style format, including two current high-quality resources within the last five years, you can use your book as a primary resource. Use grammarly.com and use the library resources from your course shell to support your answer, and should reflect what you’ve learned from the module readings, as well as any life experience you have had with health care systems.
Sample Essay Answer, Writing Guide
As a member of the resource allocation committee, tasked with deciding which four out of ten critical patients will receive immediate life-saving surgery, I would approach this decision by considering several ethical principles, including beneficence, non-maleficence, justice, and respect for patient autonomy. In this scenario, the hospital only has resources for four patients, and none of the patients can be transferred to another hospital due to the impending hurricane. Therefore, a decision must be made quickly and with careful consideration.
One criterion that I would use is the degree of sickness of each patient. Patients who have a higher chance of survival with surgery should be given priority. This criterion aligns with the principle of beneficence, which requires healthcare providers to act in the best interests of their patients. Patients who have a lower chance of survival, even with surgery, may be considered for later treatment, assuming resources become available.
Another criterion that I would consider is the benefit to society. Patients who have occupations that contribute to society, such as healthcare workers, teachers, or first responders, may be given priority over patients who do not have such occupations. This criterion aligns with the principle of justice, which requires healthcare resources to be distributed fairly and equitably.
Age should not be a criterion for decision-making, as it conflicts with the principle of non-maleficence, which requires healthcare providers to avoid harming their patients. Additionally, prioritizing patients based on their age may be seen as ageism and unfair discrimination.
The social standing and lifestyle of patients should also not be considered, as it conflicts with the principle of respect for patient autonomy. Patients should not be penalized or rewarded based on their socioeconomic status, as this may create bias and inequality.
In conclusion, the resource allocation committee must consider ethical principles such as beneficence, non-maleficence, justice, and respect for patient autonomy when deciding which four out of ten critical patients will receive immediate life-saving surgery. Patients who have a higher chance of survival with surgery should be given priority, and patients who contribute to society should also be considered. Age, social standing, and lifestyle should not be used as criteria for decision-making, as they conflict with ethical principles and may create bias and inequality.
Malm, H., May, T., Francis, L. P., Omer, S. B., Salmon, D. A., Hood, R., … & Kahn, J. P. (2020). Ethics, pandemics, and the duty to treat. American Journal of Bioethics, 20(5), 29-33.
White, D. B., Lo, B., & Mitra, D. (2020). Respecting disability rights—toward improved crisis standards of care. New England Journal of Medicine, 383(5), e27.