Ethical decision making in pharmaceuticals

This paper forms an analysis of the government pharmacists entitled the responsibility to give the final verdict on the issue of approving new drugs into the market. In-line with Buerki and Vottero, (45), the framework for decision making procedure in pharmacy entails the process of assembling a judgment to supports professional actions towards valid choices that are based on reflection and reason.

The first step ought to involve recognition and analysis of any dilemma that may exist. The systematic identification of the problem is the foundation for analysis of any department in accordance to the law. Problem identification ought to be a clearly defined procedure to reduce uncertainty or ambiguity.

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According to Buerki and Vottero (45), the critical process of problem identification in pharmacy involves the distinct steps of gathering or identifying the technical facts, identifying moral parameters which may exist, analyzing the legal constraints involved and identifying relevant human values.

By having the required facts at hand, the pharmacists are in a position to analyze the ethical implications and moral dilemmas associated with the problem. Today, pharmacists face the issue of weighing between possible economical losses or obstructing government’s reputation over the patients care in provision of medicine such as newly released strong antibiotics.

Their conscious have to question the action they decide to take. Will they be reacting ethically if they endorse or recommend newly approved drugs regardless of effects?

In relation to Buerki and Vottero (46), on identification of moral parameters, it is important to engage a personal debate over the extent to which the decision made have on the reputation of the government and involved firms for instance, to what extent would the high pricing affect segments of the clientele? The process of problem analysis and identification should also involve analysis of the effects of legal constrains that are involved.

Other ethical issue involve invoking conscience clause in relation to the law. Sometimes pharmacists prescribe expensive drugs due to the influence of firms involved in sales. The management of such firms may have different perspective over new drugs because they are being driven by their consciousness of profit making. Pharmacists therefore need to analyze their consciousness and validate them against the laws governing people against malicious pharmaceutical companies.

The decision they make ought to enhance the relationship between the pharmacists and the patients rather than conform to unprofessionalism or unethical organizational cultures. Some governing regulations are internal bureaucratic rules crafted to enhance efficiency of the involved firms at the cost of good patient care. Ethically these are third party constraints.

Pharmacists need to understand that they are ethically entitled to other options other than remain confined to delivery of the final rule. Relevant research based on the past experiences assists in finding reasonable grounds for decision making. The research findings are an alternative essential for distinguishing between business alterations and ethics of healthcare.

Depending on the developed alternatives over the course of action to take, revealing logical suggestions to colleagues strengthens the final verdict. In the field of pharmacy, the ethical issue has to connect to modern ethical theories. Ethically, one would be concern with the outcomes or the consequences of the actions taken. The action becomes right or wrong in connection with the outcome.

Consciously, it is apparent that a pharmacist, who acts as per the truth, would easily overcome serious circumstances, while one who practices non consequential measures struggles due to the dilemma over truth or false information, because they need to first assess the side that is more beneficial.

Reasonably in line with Robert and Vottero (46), “ethical decisions allow one to focus upon a more objective goal.” Moral standards are widely acceptable in the quest for results. The standards may include the principals that accept behaviours of pharmacists with the aim or supporting the patient’s health, or those that urges them to avoid the harmful actions.

The cause of action taken mainly depends on ethical values. The life-saving drugs which are very expensive such as the strong antibiotic requires pharmaceutical consideration as a “primary social good” for personal need. This is an ethical value lacking in majority of the pharmacist’s contemporaries since they know that most newly approved drugs can sometimes be very expensive and are prescribed due to influences by well-established pharmaceutical firms. It would be recommendable to consider an appropriate and affordable or reasonable price for such drugs which can still maintain reasonable profits for the firms other than negotiating human values.

Virtue is an important aspect of professional ethics. Virtue is known as the trait and character of a person. It is certainly a basic conceptual foundation for ethical practice in pharmacy. The practitioner is expected to be virtuous over judgmental mistake that may lead to an ethically or morally wrong act.

In case of the mistake, the blame would not automatically fall onto him/her, because the intention was out of utmost good faith. “The vultures of faith, fortitude, and compassion have been associated with and in some cases driven the moral motivation of health care practitioners” (Buerki and Vottero, 47)

It is not necessarily right to state that a practitioner who makes morally defensible decisions is right since he/she may purposefully avoid other responsibilities, such as engaging other colleagues. A pharmacist may act out of royalty and good faith to the organization or management and tolerate the potential dangers of neglecting assigned duties of ensuring patients safety. Human virtues are held by individuals and they reflect the unique characters and believe of the person.

Conclusion

There are some virtues that most pharmacists believe are more essential for their practice today. Altruism is the good quality of being concern of the welfare of others. In pharmaceutical industries, altruism focuses on the attention to assist patients by providing medical care and being sensitive to their social issues.

This calls for commitment, compassion and generosity. Equality is the virtue of being concern of the patient’s rights and, privileges. The virtue of justice emphasizes on non-discrimination by upholding all the morals and legal principals with required integrity.

Work cited

Buerki, Robert and Louis Vottero. “Ethical Responsibility in Pharmacy Practice” Chicago: Amer. Inst. History of Pharmacy Publisher, 2002.

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