Cynthia C. Coleman, DBe, HEC-C, RN
As a clinical ethicist, I strive to empower all stakeholders (clinicians, patients, and families) in assessing what are the right decisions for the individuals involved in clinical plans of care. Ethical dilemmas occur when there are multiple options to choose from. Sometimes we must choose between multiple “good” options vs multiple “bad” options. The application of ethical theory and ethical frameworks for decision making in the clinical setting can help move plans of care forward after conflict or prolonged periods of indecision. As the ethicist, I encourage multiple stakeholder inclusion in seeking solutions. While patient autonomy ought to be promoted at all times, autonomy does not outweigh the obligation to promote the highest amount of good and prevent avoidable harm. Clinicians are stakeholders in clinical outcomes and ought not be coerced into prescribing or withholding clinical interventions unreasonably. High quality outcomes occur when the practice of evidence-based medicine is optimized. The delivery of high quality health care is the fiduciary responsibility of all clinicians. Ethics consults can assist when barriers are identified. My special areas of interest include professional values, personal values, moral distress, end-of-life transitional care, transparency, resilience and stakeholder engagement.
Hastings Center Forum: Stowe Locke Teti, Christy Cummings, Louise P. King, Cynthia C. Coleman, Kayla Tabari and Christine Mitchell, “Should New Mothers With Covid-19 Be Separated From Their Newborns?”
Comprehensive Quality Assessment in Clinical Ethics. Cunningham TV, Chatburn A, Coleman C, DeRenzo EG, Furfari K, Frye J, Glover AC, Kenney M, Nortjé N, Malek J, Repenshek M, Sheppard F, Crites JS. J Clin Ethics 2019 Fall;30(3):284-296. PMID: 31573973.
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