Child Diagnosed with Meningitis – Child Development Example

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"Child Diagnosed with Meningitis" is a marvelous example of a paper on child development. Hickman (2006) explains that Uustal’ s model is of great importance in decision making on issues that present an ethical dilemma. It enables individuals to make decisions objectively and in a cognitive perspective manner as it opposes the integration of emotional perspective in the decision-making process. The model recommends some steps that are incorporated in decision-making processes especially in the field of health care. Dunham-Taylor & Pinczuk (2004) elaborate on the stages of the model illuminates above.

The initial step entails the identification of the problem. This is achieved by trying to find out the individuals involved in the dilemma; their relationship and the situation involved. It helps in identifying the dilemma and the physician involved in the decision-making process has to state conflict in values. The second step involves stating both the values and ethical position in relation to the challenge. The physician has to determine how the issue in discussion aligns or commensurate with his/her values. The next step encompasses weighing on the considerable variable (factors) in relation to the situation and coming up with options with the aim of resolving the dilemma.

In the fourth step, the options generated in the previous steps are examined and categorized after which those that are consistent or inconsistent with the physician's values are identified. Suppose the ideal alternative does not commensurate with the physician’ s values then another individual practitioner may be incorporated to assist in the resolution. This is to ensure that there is no biasness besides the physician not being compelled to violate his or her values.   The fifth step requires the individual mandated with the task of making the decision to attempt to forecast the possible outcome of the accepted option.

At this stage, the prediction of the consequences entails areas such as social, psychological, spiritual, physical, and the short term as well as the long term consequences. The Next step involves prioritizing the acceptable options in the preferential order from the most acceptable to the least acceptable. The seventh step will involve the generation of action plans through the utilization of the list of acceptable options and determination of what will be done concerning the dilemma.

The proceeding stage is the implementation stage after which in the ninth stage, the action taken is re-evaluated. The re-evaluating encompasses asking questions if the action taken is indeed the right one and also if the action is ethical. Solving the dilemma using the above model The child is sick suffers from high fever, violent vomiting, and has experience convulsion. The parents are divorced and the mother who has custody of the child is not the biological parent. Moreover, the mother is a Christian scientist whose religious leaning doesn’ t encourage medical treatment and the biological father resides in a state further from that of the child.

The ethics within which medical practitioners adhere to are that the medical treatment of minors involves seeking consent from parents or guardians. The problem in this scenario is that when both parents are contacted, they differ in opinion. The mother’ s conviction is lenient to a religious doctrine that discourages medical treatment while the dad insists on the treatment of the diagnosed meningitis to be administered. The dilemma is whose directives should be adhered to.

However, it is ethical that the medical practitioner attends to the child since they are not only authorized to do so but also swore an oath to attend to patients. If the child is left unattended to then the consequences may be detrimental and legal actions can be pressed against the practitioners. If the child is attending to the child who is in pain may be rescued from consequences such as death or deteriorations of health or the child's condition may become chronic to the extent of affecting the child in the future.

The deontological ethical principles illuminate that actions are considered right or wrong irrespective of the consequences. The rightness or wrongness of an action is pegged on the motives behind the action. Therefore, the options available in this case are to either conform to the fathers consenting for the child to be treated or stopping the treatment because the mother is not for the idea of medical treatment since her religious conviction dictates so.   The resultant consequences of hiding to the father’ s consent are that the ailing child may be rescued from eventualities such as death or effects that accompany which may be otherwise when the mother’ s opinion is incorporated.

The priority in this scenario is to identify the amicable solution that will help the ailing child and treatment appear to be the ideal situation. Therefore, if I were the physician, I would have gone ahead with the treatment of the diagnosis since, despite the parents of the child being divorced, the father of the child has concern for the child.

Moreover, that is the ideal right thing to do. As a medical practitioner, I have not only a moral obligation but also a duty to attend to the sick. Dialogue explaining to parents the decision made I had to make a decision that is beneficial to both the parents and the child. The child was diagnosed with meningitis (Myers, 2012).   The condition is usually characterized by the inflammation of the brain. It is caused by viruses or bacteria or fungi or the use of certain drugs (though not common).

It can be a life-threatening condition as it affects the brain and sometimes the spinal cord. When a patient is reported to be ailing from the condition then is usually regarded as an emergency case. Its symptoms or rather it manifests itself when an individual is experiencing high fever, headache, vomiting, or at time convulsion as was the case with the child. However, the condition can be prevented through the long term means such as vaccination or short term means by the patients being administered with the appropriate antibiotics. When the condition is left untreated for a longer period of time it can cause death or a lasting impairment to the patient.

Moreover, the situation may be so dire that medical surgery may be incorporated. Medical surgeries are not only costly but may at times be scary and are usually based on chances of survival (Shmaefsky & Babcock, 2010).


Myers, T. J. (2012). Meningitis. Cork: Publish on Demand Global LLC.

Shmaefsky, B., & Babcock, H. (2010). Meningitis. New York: Chelsea House.

Hickman, J. S. (2006). Faith community nursing. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Dunham-Taylor, J., & Pinczuk, J. (2004). Health care financial management for nurse managers: Merging the heart with the dollar. Sudbury, Mass: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.

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