Virtue Ethics and the Normative Theory – Essay Example

The paper "Virtue Ethics and the Normative Theory" is an outstanding example of an essay on social science. The normative theory seeks to describe what is considered right or wrong; in the broader way, normative theory gives describes what humans consider just or unjust to others when committed (Scotia, 2). Aristotle’s virtues theory insists and emphasizes on the fact that a good human life is as a result of routine or habit short of mind. A virtue in itself is a trait which is familiar ton character and describes what is rightfully done for the goodwill of the doer and yields positively to the society (Bowden, 1). Virtue ethics connect with the normative theory as they facilitate a conducive base for making normative ethical decisions; this applies to an individual or an organization that deals with healthcare provision. Aristotle’s virtue ethics in relation to the healthcare providers entails the goodwill that the providers have for the health of their patient. The patients are however faced with a situation where they are required to apply four approaches namely beneficence, autonomy, justice and non-maleficence. Beneficence is a term derived from the phrase benefit only; the act of going a higher notch than just avoid harmful acts. The implication of a health care provider who has beneficence in mind is that they have the moral obligation to act positively and looking forward to assisting others; in this case, the patient. In the normal world, the lack of practicing beneficence is not viewed as a failure by society. However in the case of health care practitioners, regarding the professional guidelines in the sector; beneficence is a value and lack of it is considered unprofessional (Summers, 49). Autonomy entails the act off involving the service receiver about ones decision to do no harm but only beneficial activities. In healthcare, the patient’s ailment may match the will of the medical practitioner to help but the fact that the practitioner never sought the patient's consent renders the decision void as far as autonomy is concerned. Autonomy focuses on the aspect of choice and decision making for patients (Summers, 50). A patient may choose a certain mode of treatment or make a choice out of coercion; in this scenario, the health practitioner is faced with a dilemma to either do what he/she considers professionally right or act to please the patient or someone who is influencing the choice of the patient.  Justice is the allocation of fair treatment. Healthcare involves many cases of the same ailment which at times the practitioners need to provide the same care and services. According to Aristotle, insists that similar cases require similar attention and treatment except where there is a case of material deference. Justice raises several issues in scenarios that it requires to be applied (Summers, 52). In the sector of healthcare, the practitioners have the obligation to possess a number of virtues in order to deliver their services for the satisfaction of the patients. These virtues in their fullness are in built in the professionals or are cultivated in the course of the provision of their services. The virtue of empathy, compassion, discipline, and dedication are key for a health practitioner. Empathy being the feeling to understand ones feeling and act accordingly is key in healthcare. Healthcare practitioners who possess the virtue to deliver effectively when it comes to recognizing and validating the patients feeling including fear, worry and sometimes pain. This way, the medic is in a better position to undertake their diagnosis in a more accurate manner with more care. Empathy goes beyond the physical and diagnostic symptoms, but rather the understanding and connection of the mind, soul, and the body of the patient to that of the medic; the latter develops the patients trust, calmness and reduce anxiety hence give best treatment results. Compassion is viewed and defined in most settings as the act of understanding one's level of anguish and being in a position to suffer with them. Compassion is most relevant to a patient who is in a critical condition in a case which the family members and the patient are likely to receive compassion and care at the personal level. Health institutions that show compassion to their patients usually receive very few cases of customer complaints. Dedication is the value of giving oneself out for the service of others. It is a virtue that calls for one's sacrifices for the sake of others and at other times not expecting anything in return rather than the success of others. Healthcare practitioners need to be dedicated in their duties; it is a career that needs a person to be committed and prepare for daily challenges posed by the effects that one causes to a person’s life considering the type of service one the medic offers to the patient (Craig, 1). Conclusively, the normative theory encompasses several virtues that in one way or another affect the wellbeing of the health sector. The health services providers need to have the knowledge to enable them to maneuver through their work with the virtues of beneficence, autonomy, and justice in their mind. Compassion, empathy, and dedication are virtues that a practitioner needs to have in order to deliver to the patient’s satisfaction.



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