Topic 1: Decision-making for Gladys Gwynn’s Surgery
In the case of Gladys Gwynn, there are several factors that need to be considered when determining who should make the decision about her surgery. Gladys is unable to speak for herself due to the effects of the pain medication, and she does not have any relatives to advocate on her behalf. Therefore, it is important to identify if there is a Health Care Power of Attorney (HCPOA) in place that designates someone at Sunny Meadows as her decision-maker.
It is possible that when Gladys moved into Sunny Meadows, she may have signed a HCPOA assigning someone at the facility as her decision-maker. A HCPOA is a legal document that grants an individual the authority to make medical decisions on behalf of the patient if they are unable to do so themselves. If such a document exists, it would be appropriate for the designated person at Sunny Meadows, such as Dr. Johnstone, to make decisions about Gladys’s surgery.
However, if there is no HCPOA in place, the decision-making process becomes more complex. In this situation, it would be important to consider the ethical principles of autonomy, beneficence, and non-maleficence. Autonomy refers to the right of an individual to make decisions about their own healthcare. Beneficence requires healthcare providers to act in the best interest of the patient, and non-maleficence prohibits causing harm to the patient.
In the absence of a designated decision-maker, it would be appropriate to involve an ethics committee or an ethics consultant to help determine the best course of action. This committee or consultant would consider Gladys’s values, preferences, and any previously expressed wishes regarding medical treatment. They would also consult with the healthcare team and other relevant professionals to weigh the potential benefits and risks of the surgery.
Ultimately, the goal should be to make a decision that aligns with Gladys’s best interests and respects her autonomy as much as possible. This may involve exploring alternative treatment options, considering her prognosis, and gathering input from healthcare professionals who are familiar with her condition.
Topic 2: Responsibility for Sheri Smith’s Accident
In the case of Sheri Smith’s accident while assisting Mrs. Gwynn, the question arises as to whether Sheri should be held responsible and if Sunny Meadows, as her employer, should be held responsible as well.
Determining responsibility in accidents can be complex, and various factors need to be considered. Firstly, it is essential to assess the circumstances of the accident and whether there was any negligence involved. Negligence refers to the failure to take reasonable care, resulting in harm or injury to another person.
In this case, if Sheri’s actions or lack of proper care directly led to the accident, she may be considered responsible. However, it is important to note that accidents can sometimes occur even when individuals prioritize safety and take all necessary precautions.
As an employee of Sunny Meadows, the liability of the facility can also come into question. Employers are generally responsible for the actions of their employees while performing their duties within the scope of their employment. If it can be demonstrated that Sunny Meadows failed in its duty to ensure a safe working environment or adequately train its employees, the facility may share some responsibility for the accident.
To determine liability, an investigation should be conducted to gather all relevant facts. This may involve reviewing witness statements, analyzing safety protocols in place, and assessing the adequacy of training provided to Sheri and other staff members.
Ultimately, assigning responsibility requires a thorough evaluation of the circumstances surrounding Sheri’s accident, considering both her actions and the potential contributory factors. It is crucial to ensure fairness, taking into account any relevant legal, ethical, and professional standards.