Ethics Consultation Services

Ethics
Ethics is our sense of "right" and "wrong". It is defined by our moral principles and values.

Ethics plays a role in all areas of life and work, including health care. Health care providers, patients and visitors can sometimes have ethical dilemmas when there is no clear answer about what is right for a patient. Sometimes ethical dilemmas might not involve a patient or patient care at all.

Our Service
The Grace Hospital Ethics Consultation Service can help look at the ethical issues in a situation. The goal of the service is to help identify the ethical issues, and bring all the people involved together in the spirit of open dialogue.

The service is provided through the Grace Hospital Ethics Committee, which has members from all areas of the hospital. All committee members have ethics education and training.

A Consultation
Consultations involve discussions with all the people involved and can include staff, volunteers, the patient and family members (among others). We look at things like respect, autonomy, justice and fairness. The process will make sure all opinions are heard and respected. When everyone comes together, agreement can often be reached. The Ethics Committee does not make decisions. Final decisions lie with the patient, family and staff.

When We Should Be Involved
The Ethics Consultation Service is not intended to replace day-to-day decision making. If you have a problem we suggest you first talk with the people involved. Patients and families can talk to their care providers, the Clinical Manager on the unit or the Patient Relations Officer. Staff and teams are encouraged to work to address ethical concerns together. If the problem still cannot be resolved, an Ethics Consultation can be requested.

How to Request a Consultation
Anyone can request an ethics consult, including staff, physicians, volunteers, patients or family members. To make a request please fill out the Ethics Consultation Request Form (FC#192) and deliver it in the addressed envelope to the Grace Hospital Administration Office. You will receive a response within two business days. If it is an emergency situation, please contact the Administration Office, or, after hours, the Administrator on call.