Ethical Issues Facing the Speech-Language Pathologist in the Acute Care Setting Speech-language pathologists working in the acute care medical setting regularly encounter situations in which ethical dilemmas arise. The most frequent of these clinical situations is the elderly patient with a history of dementia and recurrent aspiration pneumonia who has been admitted to the hospital with flagrant pulmonary aspiration on clinical ... Article
Article  |   June 01, 1999
Ethical Issues Facing the Speech-Language Pathologist in the Acute Care Setting
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Tessa Goldsmith
    Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston
Article Information
Articles
Article   |   June 01, 1999
Ethical Issues Facing the Speech-Language Pathologist in the Acute Care Setting
SIG 2 Perspectives on Neurophysiology and Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders, June 1999, Vol. 9, 20-24. doi:10.1044/nnsld9.2.20
SIG 2 Perspectives on Neurophysiology and Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders, June 1999, Vol. 9, 20-24. doi:10.1044/nnsld9.2.20
Speech-language pathologists working in the acute care medical setting regularly encounter situations in which ethical dilemmas arise. The most frequent of these clinical situations is the elderly patient with a history of dementia and recurrent aspiration pneumonia who has been admitted to the hospital with flagrant pulmonary aspiration on clinical and radio-graphic examinations, but who continues to eat by mouth per his wishes, those of the medical team, or the patient’s family. Several management questions presenting ethical dilemmas arise for this patient: What recommendations should the speech-language pathologist make and on what basis should they be made? What should the speech-language pathologist’s course of action be if the recommendations are not followed? What ethical issues does this clinical scenario raise? Is there a set of guidelines that can be applied to similar clinical ethical encounters that are based not on emotion but upon sound ethical principles and virtues?
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