Ethical dilemmas in general hospitals: Differential perceptions of direct practitioners and directors of social services

Authors
Citation
R. Landau, Ethical dilemmas in general hospitals: Differential perceptions of direct practitioners and directors of social services, SOCIAL W H, 30(4), 2000, pp. 25-44
Citations number
33
Language
INGLESE
art.tipo
Article
Categorie Soggetti
Social Work & Social Policy
Journal title
SOCIAL WORK IN HEALTH CARE
ISSN journal
0098-1389 → ACNP
Volume
30
Issue
4
Year of publication
2000
Pages
25 - 44
Database
ISI
SICI code
0098-1389(2000)30:4<25:EDIGHD>2.0.ZU;2-Z
Abstract
Two distinct groups of social workers in general hospitals, fourteen direct ors of social work services and eighteen direct practitioners, were intervi ewed concerning their perception, ranking and resolution patterns of ethica l dilemmas. The reverse order of importance and somewhat different content of ethical dilemmas identified by the two groups reflect their differential position in the hierarchy of hospitals and the difference in their experie nce in dealing with ethical dilemmas vis-a-vis clients. The directors tende d to depend more on internal loci of authority, and were far more concerned with how to interpret and apply the relevant laws than the direct practiti oners. Their decision making patterns seemed to be more virtues focused in contrast to the utilitarian and rights based focus of the direct practition ers. The findings emphasize the need for social workers' knowledge of ethic al theories, rules and principles, and ethical self-knowledge. They also po int out the need for written protocols of debates and/or detailed descripti ons of applications of ethical decision making models to case situations in practice. The latter may provide guidelines for social workers in similar situations in the future, and at the same time be used as material for teac hing and supervision.