PHI 413V Healing and Autonomy Case Study Essay Assignment Paper

PHI 413V Healing and Autonomy Case Study Essay Assignment Paper

PHI 413V Healing and Autonomy Case Study Essay Assignment Paper

Death and Dying
Spirituality and religious practices have significant effects on individuals’ decisions to seek health care and accept medical recommendations. Based on the biomedical principle of autonomy, healthcare providers like physicians and nurses, should consider the spiritual and religious perspectives or worldviews that impact patient’s decisions in care provision. Spiritual needs analysis allows providers to develop a better rapport with patients and understand the effects of their religious needs and practices on recommended healthcare decisions and actions (Johnstone, 2019). Christians must accept medical interventions and allow providers to take necessary actions to offer quality care. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the case of “Healing and Autonomy” based on the Christian worldview and the role of spiritual needs analysis.

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Mike Making Irrational and Harmful Decisions
The case study on “Healing and Autonomy” presents a dilemma for the physician based on the concept of autonomy as a principle of biomedical ethics. The principle of autonomy implores physicians and other providers to respect independent decisions and patient-centered preferences concerning their healthcare interventions. Autonomy mandates physicians never interfere with a patient’s decisions and preferences. The principle requires providers to offer sufficient information and let patients, especially those competent, make decisions based on the information offered to them and their subsequent options founded on their preferences. These preferences are influenced by contextual issues like religion, spirituality, and cultural traditions. Further, legal aspects like personal liberties also affect the decisions and are based on autonomy (Beauchamp et al., 2019). In this case, the physician can only offer information and options that Mike can consider but should not influence the decisions that he makes.
Mike exercises autonomy on behalf of James since he is a minor and lacks competence. While the decisions and actions that Mike makes and takes appear irrational and harmful to James’ health, the physician cannot stop or interfere with them because of autonomy. The physician is obligated to offer sufficient information and give him all options concerning the case, from diagnosis to prognosis. However, he should not interfere with the decisions and actions that Mike considers appropriate for the son. The physician should quote and use medical and scientific facts to help Mike and Joanne appreciate the overall situation and its effects on the boy (Damiano et al., 2021). Through this approach, the physician should help Mike and Joanne analyze the issues and the situation from an informed perspective. As they prefer spiritual healing over medical intervention, the physician has no choice but to allow them to exercise autonomy and make decisions that may appear harmful to James.
Christian Thinking on Sickness, Health, Medical Intervention & Principles
Sickness and health are critical aspects in the lives of Christians, especially from biblical and religious perspectives. For a majority of Christians, sickness is a sign of God’s punishment as pronounced to Adam for man’s disobedience. Sickness means a lack of blessings from God or a chance for an individual to prove their faith in Him, as illustrated by Mike who believed that a healing service would heal their son. Christians consider health God’s blessing and a sign of one’s strong commitment and faith in Him. However, Christians ought to embrace health and sickness as a core part of human life. Sickness allows one to strengthen their faith in God (Hubbard et al., 2019). Therefore, one falls sick and gains health when they seek medical intervention. Sickness should not mean that one does not trust in God but provides a chance to improve health through acceptable remedies.
Christians should, therefore, consider medical interventions as part of the ways through which God demonstrates his efforts to promote their health and wellness. Medical interventions would enable them to experience God’s doings and miracles through recovery from diseases, including chronic and acute ones like James’ condition (Johnstone, 2019). Jesus Christ asked His disciples to seek medical intervention since those who are sick want physicians. In Mathew 9:12, Jesus asserts that healthy individuals do not require a doctor but the sick. Notably, Christians should not consider seeking medical intervention or assistance as a demonstration of a lack of faith. They must know that doing that is a way of respecting God’s command to seek medical remedies when one is ailing or sick.
Mike should allow medical interventions as prescribed by the physician to restore his son’s health and wellness. The decision to take him to the healing service led to the deterioration of his condition. Therefore, Mike should allow the physician and his team to do their best and save James (Johnstone, 2019). He should allow James to get the matching kidney from his brother, Samuel. Mike should pray that God uses the physician and the healthcare team to heal James. Mike should consider the physician and his team as God’s angels to heal his boy. He should strengthen his trust in God and understand that the physician and the team want the best for James.
The principles of beneficence and non-maleficence should influence Mike’s trust in the physician and allow him to implement the suggested interventions. The decision will also eliminate any future blames and regrets that he may encounter if he fails to follow the medical recommendations (Saad et al., 20220). Mike should not let the physician do his best because he is guided by the biomedical ethical principles of beneficence and non-maleficence. Mike should trust that all the processes will go well since the physician uses his medical knowledge and skills.
Significance of Spiritual Needs Assessment
Spiritual assessment is an essential aspect for healthcare providers to offer holistic patient care as it considers a patient’s spirituality and religious practices and their effects on decisions and patient preferences. The primary goal of a spiritual needs assessment is to enable physicians to support patients by integrating their personal, cultural, religious, and spiritual aspects into their plan of care. Through the assessment, the physician and his team as well as the patient and family develop a therapeutic rapport that is critical in providing patient-centered and holistic care (Sledge et al., 2022). The assessment also offers a chance for renewal, growth, and resiliency as well as satisfying spiritual needs more progressively and directly. Physicians in collaboration with chaplains in their facilities can conduct spiritual needs assessment using a host of tools ole the FICA, and HOPE models. These tools are effective in identifying the core issues that may impact acceptance of recommended medical interventions as opposed to declining the treatment.
In the present case, such an assessment will enable the physician to help Mike and Joanne to establish effective interventions for James. Through the assessment, the physician will identify spiritual needs accepted by the couple and recommend interventions that align with their religious beliefs, practices, norms, and values (Zwitter, 2019). The spiritual assessment will offer a context to discuss the couple’s experiences in managing and coping with their son’s illness as well as the moral decisions that they can take. The assessment will create a haven for Mike and Joanne to discuss any spiritual concerns and issues that impact their decisions.
The case study provides insightful aspects concerning the role of religion and spiritual practice in care delivery and provision. Having a spiritual assessment is key to providing patient-centered holistic care to patients in different care environments. As illustrated, Christians should accept and embrace medical interventions as part of ensuring that they are healthy. They should place their trust in God and believe that He will work through physicians and other health care providers.

Beauchamp, T. & Childress, J. (2019). Principles of biomedical ethics: making its fortieth
anniversary. The American Journal Bioethics, 19(11):9-12.
Damiano, R. F., Lucchetti, G. & Peres, M. F. P. (2021). Defining Spirituality in Healthcare: A
Systematic Review and Conceptual Framework. Frontiers in Psychology, 12, 756080-756080.
Hubbard, R., & Greenblum, J. (2019). Parental decision making: The best interest principle,
child autonomy, and reasonableness. HEC Forum, 31(3), 233-240.
DOI: 10.1007/s10730-019-09373-9.
Johnstone, M. J. (2019). Bioethics: A nursing perspective (7th ed.). Elsevier Health Sciences.
Saad, M. & De Medeiros, R. (2020). Spirituality and Healthcare-Common grounds for the
secular and religious worlds and their clinical implications. Religions, 12(1), 22.
Sledge, R. Meyer, D., Zubatsky, M., Heiden-Rootes, K., Philipneri, M. & Browne, T. (2022). A
Systematic Literature Review of Relational Autonomy in Dialysis Decision Making. Health & Social Work, 47(1): 53-61. DOI: 10.1093/hsw/hlab042.
Zwitter, M. (2019) Ethical Analysis. In Medical Ethics in Clinical Practice (pp.29-34). Springer,


Case Study: Healing and Autonomy

Mike and Joanne are the parents of James and Samuel, identical twins born 8 years ago. James is currently suffering from acute glomerulonephritis, kidney failure. James was originally brought into the hospital for complications associated with a strep throat infection. The spread of the A streptococcus infection led to the subsequent kidney failure. James’s condition was acute enough to warrant immediate treatment. Usually cases of acute glomerulonephritis caused by strep infection tend to improve on their own or with an antibiotic. However, James also had elevated blood pressure and enough fluid buildup that required temporary dialysis to relieve.

The attending physician suggested immediate dialysis. After some time of discussion with Joanne, Mike informs the physician that they are going to forego the dialysis and place their faith in God. Mike and Joanne had been moved by a sermon their pastor had given a week ago, and also had witnessed a close friend regain mobility when she was prayed over at a healing service after a serious stroke. They thought it more prudent to take James immediately to a faith healing service instead of putting James through multiple rounds of dialysis. Yet, Mike and Joanne agreed to return to the hospital after the faith healing services later in the week, and in hopes that James would be healed by then.

Two days later the family returned and was forced to place James on dialysis, as his condition had deteriorated. Mike felt perplexed and tormented by his decision to not treat James earlier. Had he not enough faith? Was God punishing him or James? To make matters worse, James’s kidneys had deteriorated such that his dialysis was now not a temporary matter and was in need of a kidney transplant. Crushed and desperate, Mike and Joanne immediately offered to donate one of their own kidneys to James, but they were not compatible donors. Over the next few weeks, amidst daily rounds of dialysis, some of their close friends and church members also offered to donate a kidney to James. However, none of them were tissue matches.

James’s nephrologist called to schedule a private appointment with Mike and Joanne. James was stable, given the regular dialysis, but would require a kidney transplant within the year. Given the desperate situation, the nephrologist informed Mike and Joanne of a donor that was an ideal tissue match, but as of yet had not been considered—James’s brother Samuel.

Mike vacillates and struggles to decide whether he should have his other son Samuel lose a kidney or perhaps wait for God to do a miracle this time around. Perhaps this is where the real testing of his faith will come in? Mike reasons, “This time around it is a matter of life and death. What could require greater faith than that?”

Assessment Description:

Answer the following questions about a patient’s spiritual needs in light of the Christian worldview.

In 200-250 words, respond to the following: Should the physician allow Mike to continue making decisions that seem to him to be irrational and harmful to James, or would that mean a disrespect of a patient’s autonomy? Explain your rationale.

In 400-500 words, respond to the following: How ought the Christian think about sickness and health? How should a Christian think about medical intervention? What should Mike as a Christian do? How should he reason about trusting God and treating James in relation to what is truly honoring the principles of beneficence and nonmaleficence in James’s care?

In 200-250 words, respond to the following: How would a spiritual needs assessment help the physician assist Mike determine appropriate interventions for James and for his family or others involved in his care?

Remember to support your responses with the topic Resources.

While APA style is not required for the body of this assignment, solid academic writing is expected, and documentation of sources should be presented using APA formatting guidelines, which can be found in the APA Style Guide, located in the Student Success Center.

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