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Ethics Self-AssessmentPurpose of the Ethics Self-AssessmentAffiliates of the American College of Healthcare Executives agree, as a condition of membership, to abide by ACHE’s Code of Ethics. The Codeprovides an overall standard of conduct and includes specific standards of ethical behavior to guide healthcare executives in their professional relationships.Based on the Code of Ethics, the Ethics Self-Assessment is intended for your personal use to assist you in thinking about your ethics-related leadership and actions. It should not be returned to ACHE nor should it be used as a tool for evaluating the ethical behavior of others.The Ethics Self-Assessment can help you identify those areas in which you are on strong ethical ground; areas that you may wish to examine the basis for your responses; and opportunities for further reflection. The Ethics Self-Assessment does not have a scoring mechanism, as we do not believe that ethical behavior can or should be quantified.How to use this self-assessmentWe hope you find this self-assessment thought-provoking and useful as a part of your reflection on applying the ACHE Code of Ethicsto your everyday activities. You are to be commended for taking time out of your busy schedule to complete it.Once you have finished the self-assessment, it is suggested that you review your responses, noting which questions you answered “usually,” “occasionally” and “almost never.” You may find that in some cases an answer of “usually” is satisfactory, but in other cases such as when answering a question about protecting staff’s well-being, an answer of “usually” may raise an ethical red flag.We are confident that you will uncover few red flags where your responses are not compatible with the ACHE Code of Ethics. For those you may discover, you should use it as an opportunity to enhance your ethical practice and leadership by developing a specific action plan. For example, you
may have noted in the self-assessment that you have not used your organization’s ethics mechanism to assist you in addressing challenging ethical conflicts. As a result of this insight you might meet with the chair of the ethics committee to better understand the committee’s functions, including case consultation activities, and how you might access this resource when future ethical conflicts arise.We also want you to consider ACHE as a resource when you and your management team are confronted with difficult ethical dilemmas. In the About ACHE area, you can access an Ethics Toolkit, a group of practical resources that will help you understand how to integrate ethics into your organization. In addition, you can refer to our regular “Healthcare Management Ethics” column in Healthcare Executivemagazine, and you may want to consider attending our annual ethics seminar.