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attempt to utilize any tool for interpretation with his patient. The risks of the surgery were never presented to the patient or his family in order for him to make an informed decision. Patients “must be told what the treatment involves, the risks involved, the chance for success, and the alternatives” (Fremgen, 2016, p.22). Dr. Ricketson took advantage of the fact that his patient did not fully understand the diagnosis, procedure details, as well as the benefits and risks that come along with it. Another ethical issue that has been presented in this case is the principle of nonmalfeasance, which means to “do no harm” by “asking the medical profession to not only do good for the patient, but also to do no harm in the process” (Fremgen, 2016, p.22). At the beginning of Arturo’s surgery, Dr. Ricketson was informed that the inventory of the M8 Titanium
Final Project I: Malpractice10CD Horizon Kit needed for the surgery had not yet been done; which is required by the established HMC policy, and Dr. Ricketson decided to proceed with the surgery anyways. After two hours into surgery, after Dr. Ricketson had removed portions of Arturo’s vertebrae and was ready to insert the two titanium rods, he was informed that the rods could not be located anywhere in the entire hospital. Staff immediately called the Medtronic sales representative in Honolulu, Eric Hanson, who stated he could not confirm that the rods were shipped, but he couldhave them delivered to HMC in ninety minutes. Dr. Ricketson denied the shipment of the rods, and decided to use a section of a surgical stainless steel screwdriver that was included in the kit; which was not intended or approved for human implantation. After the surgery, Arturo was neverinformed that a screwdriver was implanted into his spine, rather than the two titanium rods. This decision that Dr. Ricketson made has ultimately led to the death of Arturo Iturralde; for the very next day Arturo sustained multiple falls which caused the screwdriver shaft to shatter, resulting in several more surgeries and rapid decline of health until he passed away just over two years later. The “principle of nonmalfeasance causes the medical profession to stop and think before acting” to assess if this decision will impact the patient negative or positively; which Dr. Ricketson failed to do appropriately (Fremgen, 2016, p.22).B. Ethical TheoryUtilitarianism is “the ethical theory based on the principle of what is the greatest good forthe greatest number of people”, which correlates with the “impact of actions, or final outcomes, on the welfare of society as a whole” (Fremgen, 2016, p.22). On multiple occasions did Dr. Ricketson fail to oblige by this ethical theory; first off he chose to perform the procedure on Arturo Iturralde without obtaining informed consent of the risks and benefits of the procedure.
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Ethics, Physician, Health care provider, Dr. Ricketson