Needs assessment for providing clinical ethics consultation services in Tehran

Clinical Ethics 11 (1):19-27 (2016)
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Abstract

IntroductionOne of the most important duties of hospital ethics committees is to provide medical ethics consultation to the staff and patients. This study was conducted with the aim of the needs assessment of the staff for optimal provision of medical ethics consultation services.Materials and methodsThe data collection tool was a self-administered questionnaire. Hospital managers, chief nursing officers, ward managers, and head nurses of all hospitals affiliated with Tehran and Iran University of Medical Sciences entered the study. The questionnaire together with an invitation letter was sent to the samples. In the next stage, telephone follow-up of the incomplete forms was performed by the research team.ResultsA total of 448 persons participated in this study (response rate: 54.2%). The mean frequency of the need for ethics consultation in each ward was 5.2 times in the last 3 months with a median of 3. The highest needs for consultation, which were common in all wards, were observed in treatment rejection by the patient, providing necessary information to obtain informed consent and obtaining consent to high risk procedures, conflict between the decisions made by the patient and the family members, decision making for the high risk patient, request for futile or inappropriate treatments, giving bad news, and decision making for the incompetent patient.ConclusionThe prevalence of ethical issues in clinical wards is variably high. The ethical issues in the clinical setting are mainly related to respect for the patient’s autonomy and competency for decision making.

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References found in this work

What triggers requests for ethics consultations?G. DuVal - 2001 - Journal of Medical Ethics 27 (suppl 1):24-29.
Evaluating Outcomes in Ethics Consultation Research.Ellen Fox & R. M. Arnold - 1996 - Journal of Clinical Ethics 7 (2):127-138.
Evaluating the Outcomes of Ethics Consultation.J. M. Craig & Thomas May - 2006 - Journal of Clinical Ethics 17 (2):168-180.

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