ETHICAL DELIMMA FOR A VEGETATIVE PATIENT 4
the quality of life of patients in vegetative states. It also gives them time to accept the situation
and grieve in case of death. Doctors also have time to evaluate the patient and discover new and
better ways of treatment. The use of resources also honor’s the patient’s right to autonomy. The
decision of whether to prolong life artificially should follow the advance medical directives
given by the client. In case there are no guidelines, the patient's surrogate should make a choice.
However, the use of resources on a patient in vegetative states has several advantages.
First, it recognizes the biomedical ethical principle of the sanctity of life. The law advocates for
the protection of life at whatever cost. Therefore, nurses should be good stewards of life and
ensure its sanctity by making the right diagnosis for permanent vegetative states (Wade, 2013).
Once the diagnosis is correct, the use of resources to prolong life at the expense of another more
likely to benefit the patient is morally wrong. Therefore, due to the limitation of health resources,
it is important to prioritize the patient with a better diagnosis and prognosis for the use of the
available resources. This decision should be made in consultation with the healthcare team as
well as the patient’s significant others. In so doing, the health team adheres to the principle of
beneficence for the patient with a higher chance of survival.
The Advantages and Disadvantages Technology on this Ethical Dilemma
The continued use of resources including modern technological advancements on a
vegetative patient also increases the chances of survival. The extended time-frame of life-
sustaining interventions gives the family hope on the possibilities of recovery. There have been
cases of full recovery from vegetative states with the advanced medical interventions imaging,
ventilation, and medications. Technology also plays a crucial role in the diagnosis of vegetative
states and highlighting the chances of recovery for the patients (Manalo, 2013). Additionally, the
continued use of modern technology on patients in vegetative states also promotes organ