This book examines major ethical issues in nursing practice. Eschewing the abstract approaches of bioethics and medical ethics, it takes as its point of departure the difficulties nurses experience practicing within the confines of a bioethical model of health and illness and a hierarchical, technocratic health care system.
The book's contributors discuss the role of the nurse in relation to issues of informed consent, privacy, dignity and confidentiality. The book also considers nursing accountability in relation to the contemporary Western health care system as a whole. New and critical essays examine the nature of professional codes, care, medical judgement, nursing research and the law. The contributors also deal openly and honestly with controversial issues faced by nurses such as euthanasia, the epidemiology of HIV and the care of the elderly.