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Ethics for Nursing and Healthcare Practice

Ethics for Nursing and Healthcare Practice

December 2013 | 168 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
Everyday clinical practice is steeped in ethical considerations, but discussion of ethics is often removed from these real-life situations. Kath M Melia's new book works in the gap between theory and practice. The chapters tackle the main theories which form the discussion on ethics, and include practical case examples, which bring these theories into the clinical context. These classic and everyday cases challenge the reader to critically reflect on his/her own experiences and outlook.

The social, legal and professional regulation context is brought into the discussion throughout, to equip students with the knowledge that they need to make clinical decisions.

Topics covered include:

- Beauchamp and Childress' four principles of bioethics

- Rights

- Personal and individual conscience

- Moral philosophy

- The virtues/virtue ethics of the practitioner.

This book will be essential reading for pre-registration nursing students taking modules in ethics and law. It will also be a valuable text for postgraduates and qualified nurses, and students of health who need to gain an appreciation of ethics.

Principles at the Root of Ethical Debate
Nursing and Healthcare Ethics - the Sociological Perspective
Individual Conscience Approach to Ethics
Kantian Ethics - Duty-Based Theory
Ethics and the Law
Utilitarianism - Greatest Happiness Theory
Rights-based Ethics
Virtue Ethics and Professional Regulation
Concluding Thoughts

If you don’t know why nurses need to understand ethics – read the newspapers; if you want nurses to understand ethics – give them this book.  This is well written with very practical examples with which nurses and nursing students can identify.

Roger Watson
Professor of Nursing, University of Hull

Kath Melia has captured the complex relationship between ethics, sociology and law in this book. She does not simplify the issues, yet this text, with its lively case illustrations, is totally relevant to everyday clinical practice.


Alastair Campbell
Chen Su Lan Centennial Professor in Medical Ethics, National University of Singapore

'Melia tackles this most important topic in a fluent and immensely readable way.  This book should be essential reading for any nursing professional facing the complexities of contemporary practice.'

Sheila McLean, Emeritus Professor of Law and Ethics in Medicine, University of Glasgow

Kath Melia, an experienced and knowledgeable writer on health care ethics, has once again produced a very useful text for both students and registered nurses and health care practitioners in all disciplines. The emphasis on a case based, “reality” approach makes the theory-practice link explicit, a vital skill when writing about the complexities of ethics theory.

Gilly Hewetson, Lecturer in Health Care Ethics and Law, University of East Anglia

This very readable book is an excellent resource for all healthcare practitioners.
In the introduction chapters, it clearly outlines the concept of ethics, but places that concept at the heart of healthcare outlining why ethical debates are important when faced with the dilemma of deciding on the correct course of action in challenging situations.
The latter chapters explore many topics that can be perceived as difficult topics for nurses, for example, euthanasia, assisted dying and organ donation. These topics are treated objectively and would be valuable for all practitioners to read.

Dr Eloise Pearson
The Association for Perioperative Practice

Students directed to two chapters within the book for asynchronous teaching activates. Great book which explores ethical theories and offers practical examples of ethical dilemmas.

Mrs Rachel Skipper
Dept of Health Sciences, York University
December 8, 2020

Learners adopted this book and was on the essential reading list. This was for 1st year nursing BSc. the language used was appropriate and catered for those who had a level 2 or 3 language level. Also, the activities and discussion points in the book were relevant and applicable to HCA's or nurses on placement

Miss Amy Capper
access, Warrington & Vale Royal College
August 22, 2019

This book is well structured and a relatively easy read for a nursing student at undergraduate level. The vignettes interspersed throughout the book make the subject 'come alive'. They are also relevant to an Irish situation.

Dr Rita W Collins
Nursing , Hibernia College
December 8, 2016

A detailed book on ethics. Interesting and in depth book. This would be a supplementary read for 3rd-year midwives on their ethics module.

Mrs Dana Marie Colbourne
Midwifery & Child, Bournemouth University
April 29, 2016

This provides the students with some good grounding regarding ethical debates

Mrs Samantha Anne Hogan
Faculty of Health & Wellbeing, Sheffield Hallam University
January 17, 2016

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