Ethical Decisions in Palliative Care: How well are Palliative Care Teams prepared to make Them?
Sandra Martins Pereira*
Universidade dos Açores – Escola Superior de Enfermagem de Angra do Heroísmo (University of Azores – Nursing School of Angra do Heroísmo), Ponta Delgada, Portugal
- *Corresponding Author:
- Sandra Martins Pereira
University of Azores – Nursing
School of Angra do Heroísmo
Ponta Delgada, Portugal
E-mail: [email protected]
Received date: November 07, 2011; Accepted date: November 12, 2011; Published date: November 17, 2011
Citation: Pereira SM (2011) Ethical Decisions in Palliative Care: How well are Palliative Care Teams prepared to make Them? J Palliative Care Med 1:e101. doi: 10.4172/2165-7386.1000e101
Copyright: © 2011 Pereira SM. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Making decisions related to health care issues is a demanding task. These decisions are influenced by many combined factors related to the patient, their relatives, and the professional as an individual and as a team member, beyond other factors considering the team as a whole. When these decisions are concerned to palliative and end-of-life care, ethical dilemmas or problems may occur (e.g: decisions related to place of care and death, decisions regarding therapeutic interventions for symptom control, decisions about withholding and/or withdrawing treatments, decisions considering truth disclosure and communication, decisions considering patients’ autonomy and self-determination, decisions related to the justice and resource distribution). Beside these problems, even though palliative care principles reject any interventions in order to postpone or hasten death, issues such as medical futility, euthanasia and physician assisted suicide need to be reflected and discussed.