Nurses are faced with ethical dilemmas on a daily basis, each situation being unique and requiring the nurse to set aside their own values and beliefs in order to properly care for their patients. Situations requiring nurses to make an ethical decision are diverse and dynamic; the values set out by the College of Nurses of Ontario code of ethics remains the same. Therefore, all decision based on these vales regardless of the setting and circumstances ensure consistent solutions. The scenario involves a woman who was admitted to the NICU due to complications during her sixth month of pregnancy. The patient indicated that no extraordinary measures should be made to save her baby; she became further detached when the baby developed a bleed that resulted in some permanent brain damage. The ethical dilemma arose when the mother decided to put the baby up for adoption, stating she did not have time to take care of a special needs child. This paper attempts to explain the ethical values implicated in the scenario detailed below, in which the nurse cares for both mother and baby.
The client was a professional, thirty-five year old woman who had been married for 10 years. She was of South Asian decent and hailed from a poor family background. After years of trying to start a family, she finally achieved her first pregnancy through in vitro fertilization. During her sixth month of pregnancy the mother started to experience complication. She was advised by the nurse and the medical team to remain on bed rest and relax. The patient confided in the nurse, that she was having trouble balancing her work life while being pregnant and became resentful when the pregnancy complication forced her into bed rest. She further confided to the nurse that she was not prepared to become a mother, but her husband expressed his wish to start family and she was trying to make him happy. She told the nurse that she was not enjoying her pregnancy but believed that she will learn to love her baby once it is born. She went on to state that she had not discussed her feelings with her husband and family and asked the nurse to keep the conversation private.
The nurse had been in the nursing profession for fifteen years and working on the NICU Unit for five years. She was of Caucasian background and a single mother of two young children. She first met the patient when she was admitted with complication during the sixth month of her pregnancy. The nurse had extensive training and experience working in the paediatric unit of the hospital where she was employed. Caring for children is her passion since she lost her first child due to birth complications and raised her two children alone while putting herself through university.
In the 25th week of her pregnancy, the mother was advised by the nurse to remain on bed rest to avoid further complications and potentially hurting her unborn baby. The mother continued to work from the hospital placing additional stress on the baby...