Ethics Case Study

Ethics Case Study
Stephanie Heydon
Axia College of University of Phoenix
Health Care Ethics and Social Responsibility
Sonja Allen
April 18, 2011

Ethics Case Study
According to the World English Dictionary, ethics refers to a social, religious or civil code of behavior considered correct, especially that of a particular group, profession, or individual. Individuals face ethical dilemmas every day. For social acceptance to occur, possessing a method for making ethical decisions is essential. This paper will examine a scenario, which takes place within a physician’s office; to determine how legal and ethical ramifications affect the decision-making process and which course of action needs to be taken.
The scenario, which this paper will examine, involves Jerry McCall, an office assistant with training as both a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) and a medical assistant. Jerry, alone in the office, receives a call from a patient asking him to call in a prescription for Valium to a local pharmacy. The patient states that he is heading to the airport and is in need of the prescription. The patient also relays to Jerry that he is a friend of Dr. Williams and that Dr. Williams usually gives him some Valium before he flies.
Ethical Dilemma
Jerry is faced with an ethical dilemma on whether or not to call in the prescription for Valium. Ethically, the answer is absolutely not. Jerry, in this scenario, is working as an office assistant and even though he has both training as a medical assistant and an LPN, he is not authorized to refill a prescription. Even if Jerry were working as an LPN for the day he does not have the authorization from Dr. Williams to make that call. In doing so Jerry could lose his licensure.
Jerry should is also suspicious about the patient claiming that he is using Valium as an anti-depressant when it is intended to be used as an anti-anxiety medication. Valium (Diazepam) is classified as a schedule IV controlled dangerous...