A Moral Challenge

Morality and Ethics are very important and challenging in all professions. as we have to put our beliefs, thoughts, priorities and rights on one board and then try to find or choose what suits it best

it wasn’t easy for me to decide which clinical experience i should choose in order to share with others, not because there were nothing but because i was trying to find the most challenging one i had went through

while i was working in a rehabilitation center which mainly deals with adult cases of different chronic conditions, we received a referred pediatric “Cerebral Palsy” case, it was the first session for me with this child who was crying at the beginning of the session and it was difficult for me to do my plan even with the presence and help of the mother which was completely understandable when working with children. But then the child slowly calms down, stops crying and i start to have some contact and response from the child and doing my plan. once i had reached that, my employer told me to stop the session because there were other patients waiting and i have to start treating them as well.

i didn’t find it fair for the child to just stop the session because there were other patients waiting outside the door “but they are also patients”. the child came to the center seeking treatment as the others do. and we all know that treating children needs special considerations, time and patience, because they are not like adults who we can easily communicate with and do what we ask them to do

but from another side, i also didn’t find it fair for other patients to wait for too long to get their treatment. this extremely challenges me, on one hand the child who needs enough time for the session and on the other hand the other patients who have the right of not waiting too long to get treatment. this situation causes some sort of argument between me and my employer but it was truly a moral challenge Decision

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4 Replies to “A Moral Challenge”

  1. Dear Sara.

    This is truly common challenge in our community. Discussion why this is in our community might get us far beyond but I do see it as the need of ethics knoweledge and implementation among us as health care professionals. Therfore, changes can be achieved. I need to be honest that this may take longer time and effort. The complecated fact is when this come in a cross with clinic or hospital policy. For example, the load of patients is not enough for the time available. Here, you are in to choices. First, take longer time which may cause you conflict with your employer or colleagues and delay other patients which is morally and ethically not ideal. Second, shortinin the time for the patient which is not morally acceptable. I do love to hear in more details how you handled the situation at that time and later. What do you think?

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    1. Dear Hassan
      thanks for your comment, and as we came from the same country i am sure you have been through some challenges in your clinical days.
      to answer your question of how i handled the situation then and later, here is what had happened: at the moment i get the order to stop the session i start explaining to my employer the need of more time as i start getting response from the child, and although the discussion was in a separate room but i was quite sure that every one in the center had heard it. any way i insist in completing my session but once i entered the room,the mother apologized for me (as if she is the reason of the argument) and she asked to come for the second session the next day and give some time to other patients as well, as she saw that some of them are old in age. Truly i was amazed by her action (but it is still not fair). for sure her action solved the problem with my employer because now i will be free to treat the other patients as well but i handle the situation so we won’t go through problems in the coming sessions: as i knew that the center is partially empty at the first hour from starting our work, i asked her to come early to the center so i can get use of that time with less patients to do the session for the child
      this is the completion of the story, that i am quite sure every health professional in my community had went through, due to many reasons, and as you mentioned the policy that doesn’t help by any means
      thanks again for your comment, and waiting to read a challenging story from your side as well

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      1. For me one of the challenges it’s not clear in my community what is a physiotherapist is? In some people mind he is a doctor in other’s he is an assistant. Later, the situation improved when several physiotherapy school’s started. Before that I just didn’t gave more attention and keep trying to give informations explaining what physiotherapy is. In the clinic, education and counselling was ongoing process while I am treating my parients which showed good impact on patient mind. This worked in different positive psychological aspects.

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  2. Unfortunately, Physiotherapy and physiotherapists went through variety of challenges in our community, and not having a clear idea of what physiotherapy is or what physiotherapist does was a great challenge for all of us.
    hopefully the coming years will be better and brighter

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