Moral distress among Norwegian doctors

Journal of Medical Ethics 34 (7):521-525 (2008)

Abstract
Background: Medicine is full of value conflicts. Limited resources and legal regulations may place doctors in difficult ethical dilemmas and cause moral distress. Research on moral distress has so far been mainly studied in nurses. Objective: To describe whether Norwegian doctors experience stress related to ethical dilemmas and lack of resources, and to explore whether the doctors feel that they have good strategies for the resolution of ethical dilemmas. Design: Postal survey of a representative sample of 1497 Norwegian doctors in 2004, presenting statements about different ethical dilemmas, values and goals at their workplace. Results: The response rate was 67%. 57% admitted that it is difficult to criticise a colleague for professional misconduct and 51% for ethical misconduct. 51% described sometimes having to act against own conscience as distressing. 66% of the doctors experienced distress related to long waiting lists for treatment and to impaired patient care due to time constraints. 55% reported that time spent on administration and documentation is distressing. Female doctors experienced more stress that their male colleagues. 44% reported that their workplace lacked strategies for dealing with ethical dilemmas. Conclusion: Lack of resources creates moral dilemmas for physicians. Moral distress varies with specialty and gender. Lack of strategies to solve ethical dilemmas and low tolerance for conflict and critique from colleagues may obstruct important and necessary ethical dialogues and lead to suboptimal solutions of difficult ethical problems
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1136/jme.2007.021246
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 46,461
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

How Can Empirical Ethics Improve Medical Practice?Reidun Førde - 2012 - Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 21 (4):517-526.

View all 14 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Conscientious Refusal and a Doctors's Right to Quit.John K. Davis - 2004 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 29 (1):75 – 91.
Moral Distress in Uninsured Health Care.Anita Nivens & Janet Buelow - 2013 - Journal of Bioethical Inquiry 10 (1):123-125.
Workplace Bullying, Psychological Distress, and Job Satisfaction in Junior Doctors.Lyn Quine - 2003 - Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 12 (1):91-101.
The Feeling of Pain and the Emotion of Distress.Eric A. Salzen - 2002 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 25 (4):471-471.
Learning to Care‐‐The Development of Empathy.Lisa Kuhmerker - 1975 - Journal of Moral Education 5 (1):25-33.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2010-09-13

Total views
19 ( #486,420 of 2,286,397 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
5 ( #249,152 of 2,286,397 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature