Benchmark – patient’s spiritual needs: case analysis
Part 1: Autonomy and Respect As a healthcare professional, it is essential to respect patient autonomy, allowing them to make decisions about their care. However, in situations where the patient’s choices may cause harm to themselves or others, the healthcare provider has an ethical obligation to intervene. In this case, it is evident that Mike’s decision to forego medical intervention for James, who is gravely ill, is harmful and may result in James’s death. As such, the physician cannot allow Mike to continue making irrational decisions, and instead, must engage in conversations with Mike to explore his reasons for refusing medical intervention and identify alternative interventions that align with James’s best interests.
Part 2: Christian Worldview on Sickness, Health, and Medical Intervention The Christian worldview recognizes that sickness and disease are a result of sin in the world. Therefore, Christians believe in the power of prayer, healing, and miracles. However, Christians also acknowledge that God has given humans the ability to create medical interventions that can help alleviate human suffering. Christians, therefore, believe in utilizing medical interventions while also trusting in God’s will for their lives.
Mike, as a Christian, should not solely rely on prayer and should consider medical intervention for James. He should reason that God has given medical professionals the knowledge and tools to treat illnesses, and not utilizing them would be disregarding God’s gift of knowledge. In honoring the principles of beneficence and non-maleficence, Mike should consider medical interventions as they are aimed at benefiting James’s well-being and preventing harm.
Part 3: Spiritual Needs Assessment A spiritual needs assessment can help healthcare providers identify patients’ spiritual needs and beliefs and provide appropriate interventions. In this case, a spiritual needs assessment can assist the physician in understanding Mike’s spiritual beliefs and the role of prayer in his decision-making process. This knowledge will help the physician engage in conversations with Mike that consider his spiritual beliefs, concerns, and values, and incorporate them into James’s care plan. The spiritual needs assessment will also help identify interventions that support the family’s spiritual and emotional well-being, such as counseling and pastoral care.
References: American Nurses Association. (2015). Code of ethics for nurses with interpretive statements. Silver Spring, MD: American Nurses Association. Butts, J. B., & Rich, K. L. (2018). Philosophies and theories for advanced nursing practice. Jones & Bartlett Learning. Shelly, J. A., & Miller, A. B. (2006). Called to care: A Christian worldview for nursing (2nd ed.). InterVarsity Press.