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Case Study: Hygienist In The Middle Evaluated

733 words - 3 pages

In this particular case study, many ethical dilemmas exist. The hygienist feels, very strongly, that the patient has moderate periodontal disease. With the probing depths, and state of the tissue, it is quite possible that the patient has type 2 periodontitis. However, the dentist feels differently. This brings into play the opposing professional autonomy of the dental hygienist and the dentist. If the hygienist was to do as the dentist instructed, and performed only a standard scaling, she feels she would be providing substandard care to the patient. However, to diagnose the periodontal disease herself would be outside of her scope of practice.
Several legal issue may also be applied to ...view middle of the document...

42). He also failed to uphold the principle of beneficence. Several actions could have been taken to further evaluate the condition of the patient, such as prescribing diagnostic radiographs.
It is questionable whether the hygienist had managed this difference in an appropriate manner. She did not diagnose the problem at any point and so was within her scope of practice. Though, her correspondence with the dentist might have been handled differently. Was it made apparent to the dentist that previous dental charting had not reflected his statement? Or if his statement was true, why did the records not accurately reflect this? If he was not aware of the previous dental condition reflected in the chart, this should have been reviewed with him. The major issue would be with the way the hygienist interacted with the patient after her conversation with the dentist. Prior to exercising her professionally autonomy, in regards to not providing what she perceived as substandard care, discussing her discomfort in treating the patient with the dentist could have prevented future friction. In essence, asking the patient to reschedule with another hygienist and telling the patient what she would personally do in that situation, was stating...

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