Beneficence and Nonmaleficence





Joshua M. Garcia

June 21, 2020

Part 1: Chart

Medical Indications

Beneficence and Nonmaleficence

Patient Preferences


Medical indications are facts, views, opinions, and interpretations concerning the patient’s physical and psychological condition that offer a reasonable basis for therapeutical activities and diagnostics aimed at determining the overall goal for medication such as care and cure for the illness that the patient is suffering from. Beneficence focuses more on doing no harm. Healthcare providers vow to take care of the patient without harming or causing them pain. For autonomy, James’ parents wanted to wait for healing from God before trying the dialysis. We respect the choice that they made. Many health care practices can have an effect on autonomy.
Quality of Life

Beneficence, Nonmaleficence, Autonomy

Contextual Features

Justice and Fairness

Quality of life is the joy, comfort and standard of health that an individual experiences or feels. When James’ condition became worse his parents took him to the healthcare facility. Once he received dialysis, he felt better. When his parents found out that he is going to need a kidney transplant and the only match was his son. The parents decided to talk to their sons and see what they think concerning the situation. In addition, they also decided to pray. The majority of the Christians will take their burdens and pain to God for help before they can make a final decision or consider the medical options. Although James had a perfect match, the parents still wanted to pray and see if God is going to give them another option or heal his son. The two children were eight years old. The parents were worried that if James’ twin brother has the same issue, they would not be able to help him. This is not an easy decision to make.

Part 2

Question 1

Based on the Christian worldview, the most important principle is Beneficence. This means evaluating the benefits of the treatment or medication against the risks. In this case, Mike and Joanne’s initiatives were only intended with the best health outcome for the sick child. One of their close friends regained mobility after a stroke. This strengthened their faith in healing. Moreover, they decide to pray for their son. Although they sought medical advice and treatment, they preferred healing from prayer since they had faith. In addition, James’ parents sought no harm to their son. When they saw that the situation was getting worse, they decided to bring the child to a health care facility for treatment. Healthcare professionals decide to take good care of the patients without causing them any harm.

It is essential that James received care and treatment in a timely manner from the doctors and nurses. The healthcare providers were able to save his life. His parents are Christians, and they want to trust in God for healing. They believe that God will take care of their son. As a nurse, it is important to remind the parent that God is knowledge, and through the doctors and nurses, he can heal the physical disease. The parents want the best for their children. Joanne and Mike want the child to be better. However, if the situation gets worse, they should not blame themselves since they did their best Beneficence is important because it inspires a higher standard of nursing performance, (Butts & Rich, 2019).

Question 2 

From a Christian perspective, the four principles can be ranked by having Beneficence at the top, followed by nonmaleficence, justice, fairness, and autonomy. This ranking is based on the fact that parents have unconditional and selfless love for their children. Every decision that parents make on behalf of the child is with the best intention in mind, and it is based on the principle of autonomy. Furthermore, parents also ensure that they do not cause any harm to their children. It is not easy for the parents to allow James’ twin brother to donate his kidney. This is in line with the principle of non-maleficence. Christians have an obligation to be fair and just while engaging with other people. Generally, Christians should encourage autonomy by allowing other people to make their choices.

Beneficence means that doctors and nurses should cause no harm to the patient. Health care professionals owe their patients the exceptional obligation of care. Any health action that is performed should not cause harm, pain, or injury to the patient. However, it must be for the patient benefit. Parents care, raise, and love their children unconditionally and selflessly. Autonomy recognizes that individuals have the right to make their own choices, take actions based on their belief system, morals as well as values. Everyone has their own view concerning the treatment and medication options. In addition, justice involves treating everybody equitable and fairly. These four principles are beneficial. The principles correspond to the values. However, autonomy may be affected by religious and cultural beliefs (Chadwick & Gallagher, 2016).


Butts, J. B., & Rich, K. L. (2019). Nursing ethics. Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Chadwick, R., & Gallagher, A. (2016). Ethics and nursing practice. Macmillan International Higher Education.

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