Like any other professionals in the health care industry, those who have completed CNA training need to consider the laws and mandates at both state and federal levels in order to care for their patients in an ethical manner. Because technology has advanced so much in the past year, these challenges have become even harder, especially in areas where the courts haven’t established new laws regarding practices and procedures. Because of this, CNA training graduates have to use caution and really think through every decision the may, even the ones that seem small.
While many CNA training graduates will simply need to rely on their employers to help them navigate legal issues, many will find that ethical issues they face on a daily basis will need to be handled more independently. These issues don’t typically have clear-cut answers, and that means CNA training graduates will have to weigh each decision carefully.
Ethical Decisions and CNA Training Graduates
If you’re ever faced with an ethical problem after CNA training, there are a few questions you can ask yourself to help make the decision easier.
- Does it Respect the Patient’s Wishes? You’ll end up taking care of many patients during your career after CNA training, and some of those patients may not feel the same way you do when it comes to the hard choices. If you work in a hospital, for instance, in obstetrics, some of your patients may be pro-life and some may not. No matter what your personal beliefs are, you must always make your decisions based on what the patient wants and believes, even if it goes against what you do.
- Is it Beneficial to the Patient? The decisions you make need to be positive and compassionate toward your patients. If a decision will benefit your patient, but you find it morally or religiously wrong, put aside your own feelings to give the best care to him or her.
- Are you Advocating for the Patient? CNA training graduates act as the first line of defense in many health care situations. You’ll spend the majority of your time with patients, and it will be up to you to alert other professionals if something goes wrong. If you’re faced with an ethical dilemma, ask yourself if the decision you make will be loyal, fair, and truthful toward your patients. Advocate for them; be there when no one else will.
- Is it Just? Let’s say you’ve been asked to help out at a hospital in an area that was just devastated by a natural disaster. You, as a CNA training graduate, won’t likely be left alone to make life and death decisions, but that doesn’t mean you won’t have to follow the decisions of others. In some cases, those decisions will be hard for you to swallow, and that okay. However, it will your job to determine, to the best of your ability, if the decisions are just, especially when resources are scarce. In this situation, you should talk to the nurse or the doctor about their decision if you have any questions.
CNA Training and Decisions
Worried you won’t know how to make the right decisions when you’re a CNA? Ask yourself these questions first after CNA training.