Ethics in Child Health – Chapter 21: Tensions regarding the processes associated with decision-making (ebook)


Chapter 21 of the book – Tensions regarding the processes associated with decision-making

Therapists are often on the front lines of service provision for children and young people with neurodisabilities. In this role they can be caught between the competing views, philosophies and practical realities of families, young people with impairments, community colleagues and of course the service systems within which they work. In this chapter, Woo and her colleagues discuss three scenarios, each of which poses ethical as well as ‘political’ dilemmas. They use the Occupational Therapy Code of Ethics and Ethics Standards from the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), and the Code of Ethics for the Physical Therapist from the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) to analyse the scenarios. In the cases presented here, the authors could have arrived at a variety of alternative solutions that were reasonable and defensible, and equally valid.

About the complete book

Have you ever:

  • Wondered how to deal with a family that repeatedly fails to keep clinic appointments?
  • Disagreed with colleagues over a proposed course of treatment for a child?
  • Considered ways to ‘bump’ a child on a waiting to speed up their assessment?

These are a few of the scenarios faced by clinicians in neurodisability on a daily basis. Ethics in Child Health explores the ethical dimensions of these issues that have either been ignored or not recognised. Each chapter is built around a scenario familiar to clinicians and is discussed with respect to how ethical principles can be utilised to inform decision-making. Useful ‘Themes for Discussion’ are provided at the end of each chapter to help professionals and students develop practical ethical thinking. Ethics in Child Health offers a set of principles that clinicians, social workers and policy-makers can utilise in their respective spheres of influence.


Readership: clinicians and paediatricians in neurodisability, service providers in neurodisability, community-based health professionals,  and health policy makers.

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