Article Review

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Nurses have a tough job as it is; now adding into account the emotional tolls they must endure it makes the job just that much tougher. It becomes harder in units where you know your patients are critical and hang in the balance of life and death, as in the emergency room and intensive care unit (ICU). Nurses’ views of the causes of ethical dilemmas during treatment cessation in the ICU: a qualitative study is a study done by Anne McLeod published in the British Journal of Neuroscience Nursing. This qualitative study examines the dilemmas both personal and professional a nurse must face when withdrawing care for a patient in the ICU. When your job is to help maintain life and the technology has advanced how much life and how long life can be sustained, when is it ok to withdraw or withhold care? Here we will review the literature as a whole as well as the problem, purpose, the question and framework of this study. In the past nurses were not very involved with making decisions when it came to patient care, this caused stress and frustration. Some would think that the patient is suffering for too long and other times a patient may not be given much of a chance. Studies have since shown that collaborative care and communication is key to reduce the stress in decision-making. Another study showed nurses valued being a part of the team and a part of the process of the decision-making (Puntillo, McAdam 2006). The aim of this study was to gauge the perception of nurses during the process of withdrawing or withholding care and the ethics involved. While there is much to consider for the patient and the family the nurse is essential to the grieving process, holistic process and also as a patient advocate to ensure all wishes that are known are carried out. With all of these responsibilities a nurse can become very involved not only professionally but also personally.

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