What, from an ethical point of view, is the connection between the standard of professional nursing conduct and patients’ needs for care? This question reveals the key problem of this study. Current ethics are unable to solve this problem adequately because they do not focus sufficiently on the unique nature of nursing practice. Nursing ethics deals primarily with day to day professional nurs-ing care which can be characterised by three related, though potentially conflicting dimensions. The three dimensions and the corresponding areas of conflict can be represented in a model as a triple layered cube where each layer represents a different level of professional practice. This triple lay-ered cube expresses the ontological dimension. Two different dimensions act, as it were, on this ontological dimension: an epistemical dimension and an ethical dimension. The epistemical dimen-sion involves the potential conflict between two rationalities –the scientific-functional rationality and the existential rationality. The ethical dimension involves the potential conflict between two diverging ethical orientations: a universalistic duty-centred ethics and a situational virtue-centred ethics. These elements in the various dimensions require forms of integration and synthesis, and this is the main objective of nursing ethics. On the one hand, current healthcare ethics is oriented around duty and justice, and on the other hand around virtue and care. The present study seeks to find a form of synthesis between these two orientations or to express it more accurately: seeks to find a synthesis between the diffnt ways of thinking.
|Original language||American English|
|Award date||26 Jan 2005|
|Print ISBNs||90 6464 965 0|
|Electronic ISBNs||90 6464 965 0|
|Publication status||Published - 26 Jan 2005|