Everyday clinical practice is steeped in ethical considerations, but discussion of ethics is often removed from these real-life situations. Kath M Melia's new book works in the gap between theory and practice. The chapters tackle the main theories which form the discussion on ethics, and include practical case examples, which bring these theories into the clinical context. These classic and everyday cases challenge the reader to critically reflect on his/her own experiences and outlook. The social, legal and professional regulation context is brought into the discussion throughout, to equip students with the knowledge that they need to make clinical decisions. Topics covered include: - Beauchamp and Childress' four principles of bioethics - Rights - Personal and individual conscience - Moral philosophy - The virtues/virtue ethics of the practitioner. This book will be essential reading for pre-registration nursing students taking modules in ethics and law. It will also be a valuable text for postgraduates and qualified nurses, and students of health who need to gain an appreciation of ethics. www.sagepub.co.uk/melia

Concluding Thoughts

Concluding thoughts

If one does not know to which port one is sailing no wind is favourable.

Seneca, c.4BC–65 AD

The task of this short chapter is to draw together the main themes that permeate this discussion of ethics for nursing and health care practice. Two central ideas running through the discussion are trust and judgement, ideas that encompass the business of ethics for nursing and health care practice which ultimately comes down to reasoning out the solutions to the moral questions that arise.

Trust encompasses patients’ trust in professionals and the trust that professionals have in each other and in their employing authorities. Nurses and other professionals in health care must be free to use their professional knowledge to make professional judgements. This evidence base ...

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