According to the Oxford English Dictionary (1993) ‘ethics’ are the ‘moral principles that govern a person’s behavior or the conducting of an activity.’ Which begs the definition of morality: the principles behind a distinction between good and evil? What do you do in any situation that questions your beliefs and actions in clinical practice?
WHATEVER YOU BELIEVE IS RIGHT FOR YOU IS COMPLETELY UP TO YOU TO DETERMINE!
During the beginning of Clinical practice I realized that no matter how many times I treated different individuals and their personalities, I always convinced myself that I don’t want to know more about who they are. Which I realized would affect the manner of how I interacted with all my patients and most importantly how I would feel in their presence. To be honest most of the time I tell myself “I just don’t care who he is and what he was involved in”, I treat all my patients the same but there’s a little truth into the types of sensible conclusions drawn during interactions with patients. Did I brush aside the fact he is said to be a convict and he is about to be my patient? Well a part of me agrees, in my offense helps me focus on my role as a professional , but also I make decisions based on what I think is good for my patient and not the other way round. I also consider my safety which is significant to these types of situations. This raises questions not only about safety and ethics but also about how the African context should provide the best return on their investments into the health of their people across all the dimensions and layers of health care.
Morals are there for support and guide us and I learned that it’s totally acceptable if your morals don’t always match others’. no matter how we think we were brought up doesn’t really reflect how we are in clinical settings. Morals make me skeptical sometimes when in a clinical setting. My idea of how to care for a patient changes to self doubt since you don’t know if the patient’s beliefs go hand in hand with whatever you are considering at that particular moment. There’s different personalities, cultures, some diversity that could possibly have morals that are not at all similar to yours. A diversity of being opinionated and taking an initiative to listen to what your patients requires. If your patient doesn’t want to be seen by you then it’s appropriate for them to prefer another person; they have the right to choose which gender, race or age they want their health professional to be. As health professionals, we are given duties to do the right thing and give your undivided attention to all your patients. Having a good judge of character is one of the qualities in health care professions.
Ethics and morals often contradict one another, which affects the judge of character in health care services. But it could be managed, at the level of the community the individuals are coming from, where they work and how they depend on each other. Moral issues in healthcare can be solved personally whilst Ethics requires collective societies to solve and agree on the outcome. Differences from morals and ethics, may lead us to question whether there are any universal moral principles or whether morality is merely a matter of “cultural taste.” Differences in moral practices across cultures raise an important issue in ethics; for example, the concept of “ethical relativism.”
I placed a picture of elephants in Africa, ears shaped like the continent itself, like mentioned the context of its own and quite interesting cultures and beliefs. Elephants are a nature’s great masterpiece, the GREAT HARMLESS ANIMALS! No one can change who we are personally, like elephants we will protect our territory by fighting for what we believe in. We can be aggressive if we want to and as elephants the most intelligent creatures. Notice how the cubs are in the middle of the herd so they are protected by the older ones? I stand my ground with morals and make sure that no one abuses my position or level as a physiotherapy student. I know my own limit and I respect it no matter how hard it is to conform to another party’s beliefs so that they can get proper healthcare for themselves.
Nwosu O.S(2006). Morality in African traditional society. University of Part Harcort. Nigeria(26),pp 205-229.
The Oxford English dictionary on compact disc. (1993). Choice Reviews Online, 30(07), pp.30-3603-30-3603.