Hello, this is a legal aspects assignment and you have to write about ethical dilemmas in nursing. Must be 400 words Please, APA style is required. Ethical problems occur when decisions need to be made, the answers may not be clear, and the options are less than ideal. The result could be a decline in the quality of patient care; problematic clinical relationships; and moral distress, which is defined as knowing what to do but not being able to do it or allow it.

Title: Ethical Dilemmas in Nursing: Exploring Complex Decision-Making in Healthcare


Ethical dilemmas are a recurring phenomenon in healthcare settings, where nurses often find themselves confronted with challenging situations that demand critical decision-making. These scenarios arise when multiple morally desirable courses of action are available, yet conflicts or constraints make it difficult to determine the most appropriate choice. Resolving ethical dilemmas necessitates careful examination of the principles and values at stake, taking into account legal and professional responsibilities, as well as the impact on patient care and overall healthcare outcomes. This paper aims to explore various ethical dilemmas faced by nurses, their implications on patient care quality, and the underlying factors contributing to moral distress.

Definition of Ethical Dilemmas:

Ethical dilemmas can be defined as situations where individuals encounter moral conflicts or constraints in making decisions when different, morally acceptable alternatives seem equally justifiable but are mutually exclusive or costly to implement. In nursing, ethical dilemmas often emerge due to tensions between respect for patient autonomy, beneficence, non-maleficence, distributive justice, veracity, and fidelity.

Impact on Patient Care Quality:

When confronted with ethical dilemmas, nurses may experience moral distress, which not only affects their well-being but can also result in a decline in the quality of patient care. Moral distress occurs when healthcare professionals know the appropriate course of action but are unable to implement it due to systemic or organizational constraints. Nurses who experience moral distress may exhibit symptoms of emotional exhaustion, frustration, decreased empathy, and burnout, ultimately compromising the delivery of safe, effective, and patient-centered care.

Problematic Clinical Relationships:

Ethical dilemmas can also strain clinical relationships between healthcare professionals, including nurses, physicians, and other team members. Differing perspectives, values, and approaches to ethical decision-making can create conflicts, leading to strained communication, lack of collaboration, and diminished trust among colleagues. These issues can have adverse consequences on teamwork, hindering effective care coordination and compromising patient outcomes.

Factors Contributing to Ethical Dilemmas in Nursing:

Several factors contribute to the occurrence of ethical dilemmas in nursing. These factors can be broadly categorized into individual, organizational, and societal influences. At an individual level, factors such as personal beliefs, values, and biases can shape nurses’ perception and decision-making processes. Additionally, variations in education, cultural backgrounds, and experiences can influence how ethical dilemmas are interpreted and resolved.

Organizational factors, including resource allocation, workload, time constraints, and conflicting policies or protocols, also contribute to ethical dilemmas. When healthcare organizations face financial constraints or limited resources, nurses may be confronted with difficult decisions concerning the fair distribution of resources, potentially compromising patient care quality.

Societal factors, such as changing healthcare policies, advancements in medical technology, and evolving societal values, also play a significant role. Rapid advancements in medical technology may present new ethical challenges, for instance, related to the use of artificial intelligence or genetic testing. Furthermore, societal expectations and cultural norms surrounding healthcare decisions can influence ethical conflicts, particularly in cases involving reproductive choices, end-of-life care, or controversial treatments.


Ethical dilemmas are an inherent part of nursing practice, often arising from complex healthcare scenarios where choosing between morally justifiable options is challenging. Addressing ethical dilemmas requires a comprehensive understanding of the underlying principles and values, as well as legal and professional obligations. Recognizing the impact of ethical dilemmas on patient care quality, problematic clinical relationships, and nurses’ well-being is crucial for promoting ethical decision-making and fostering an ethical culture in healthcare settings. By acknowledging and addressing these dilemmas proactively, nurses can contribute to better patient outcomes and the overall advancement of healthcare practice.

(References will be added in proper APA format for the final paper)

Do you need us to help you on this or any other assignment?

Make an Order Now