Online survey of the perceived need for ethics support in a large National Health Service Foundation Trust

Clinical Ethics 5 (4):201-206 (2010)

This article explores the attitudes of consultants in a large UK teaching hospital to the need for formal clinical ethics support. Data obtained through an anonymous online questionnaire illustrate the ways in which consultants deal with clinical ethical dilemmas and their confidence in such decision-making. In the absence of formal ethics support a large proportion of consultants who took part in the survey said that they would consult with colleagues when faced with a clinical ethical dilemma and the majority considered that this satisfactorily resolved the issue. However, 80% of respondents stated that they would find a form of ethics support within the Trust to be useful. Consultants also noted the reasons for, and barriers to, using ethics support. The response rate to the survey was low, perhaps indicating a lack of interest in the topic or that clinical ethics discussion is of low priority
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DOI 10.1258/ce.2010.010037
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