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2 pages/≈550 words
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Health, Medicine, Nursing
English (U.S.)
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Analyzing an Ethical Decision Research Assignment (Essay Sample)


Case Study
"Jane" has been referred to you (a nurse practitioner) by a surgeon. She was in a motorcycle crash 6 months ago and sustained leg and arm injuries on the left side. Although she had orthopedic repairs, she continues to experience pain. She has no regular primary care provider, which is why she is now in your office. The surgeon has no further options to offer her and believes she needs consistent follow-up. When you read her chart, you realize that Jane has ongoing alcohol abuse and heroin addiction, and that these were instrumental in the crash. Jane is 36 and has no outstanding comorbidities. She has been in several motor vehicle crashes. In addition to the leg and arm pain, she has lower back and neck pain as a result of one of these crashes. She had unsuccessful surgery on her neck and back. Jane rates the pain from her new injuries as 8 on a 10-point scale. In the areas of prior injury, she rates the pain as 6. She says she cannot work because of her daily pain. Upon questioning about drug use, she tells you that she drinks alcohol regularly to help relieve her pain. When she can afford it, she uses heroin for both emotional escape and to help calm her pain. How will you treat this patient? (D'Arcy 2011).
Write a two page paper that answers the following questions:
• Summarize the moral/ethical issue in the article (no more than 1 paragraph)
• Describe the moral and ethical dilemmas surrounding the issue
• Analyze the ethical issue and compare them to the State Health Laws and Regulations in New Jersey
• Outline the process of ethical decision making you would use as a nurse practitioner to address this ethical dilemma
References (All references should be less than 5 years old)
D'Arcy, Y. (2011). Treating Pain in Addicted Patients. Advance Healthcare Network. Retreived from: http://nurse-practitioners-and-physician-assistants(dot)advanceweb(dot)com/Continuing-Education/CE-Articles/Treating-Pain-in-Addicted-Patients.aspx
Holt, J. & Convey, H. (2012). Ethical Practice in Nursing Care. Nursing Standard/RCN
Publishing. Vol.27:13 (p51-56).
New Jersey Consumer Affairs (2016). NJ Prescription Monitoring Program. Retreived from http://www(dot)nj(dot)gov/lps/ca2/pmp/.


Analyzing an Ethical Decision
Analyzing an Ethical Decision
Jane suffers from sustained injuries in various parts of her body after being involved in a motorcycle crash a few months earlier. A surgeon refers her to me after the surgeon runs out of options to help her out. Going through her chart, I discover that she abuses drug to relieve the pain caused by the injuries and for the sake of emotional escape. The discussion below, therefore, outlines the ethical issue in that particular situation. It looks at the dilemmas surrounding it, an analysis of the ethical issue, and its comparison to the state health laws and regulations in New Jersey. Lastly, it will highlight the process of ethical decision-making that I would use as a nurse practitioner to address this ethical dilemma.
The ethical issue, in this case, is that Leah abuses drugs such as alcohol and heroin to relieve her pain for emotional escape. She considers her actions right because of its work for her good. As per utilitarianism perspective of ethics, she sees it a good practice. However, to agencies against drug abuse, her actions are entirely unethical since substance abuse poses dangerous effects to the human health.
I face the ethical dilemma in the situation as the nurse practitioner. The dilemma is that as a nurse practitioner, I know abuse of drugs is detrimental to one's health. I am however not sure if by telling Jane to stop the practice will help in any way (D’Arcy, 2011). Jane experiences excruciating pain because of the injuries she has sustained, and she needs something to lessen her pain, even if it is through the abuse of drugs.
As a nurse practitioner, I would look through Leah's chart to identify...
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