Friday, April 23, 2010

Physician and Ethics Consults and Questioning Character

Rosemary Flanigan
April 23, 2010

I am going to push once more on this issue of physicians and ethics consults (or the lack therof)—and hopefully not risk losing some good friends—to ask:

Is it ennui, intimidation, or just plain lack of interest what others think of your decisions that lead physicians, for the most part, to shun ethics consults?

I even gave you an “out”—I suggested that if being a physician equals being who you are, then to question your judgment (or to lay that judgment out for others to consider) might be questioning your very character.

I talked with a group of nurses last week only to hear several of the experienced ones say that they were not considered “part of the team”, weren’t “consulted” on a case by the physicians, and I wondered, “Then why am I worrying about doctors’ not bringing cases to a multidisciplinary group if they don’t talk them over with the attending nurses?”

Cast a little light here—docs or non-docs -- Why?



Blogger Dawn said...

Perhaps physicians do not consider ethics consultation because of the 'programming' received during medical school to rely only upon themselves. It has also been a struggle to acclimate physicians to a team approach to care and even more of a struggle to eliminate the stereotypical notion of 'ethics police'.

Monday, April 26, 2010  

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