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  • Quality Care at Newport Hospital

  • Newport Hospital Ethics Committee

  • A Place to Turn When You Face Difficult Choices

    Advanced medical technology sometimes creates complex choices, such as decisions about life-sustaining treatment or interpreting a living will. Circumstances can arise that present ethical dilemmas for you, your family or your doctor. You or your family may wish to discuss the ethical implications of pursuing certain recommended treatments. If you're unable to take part in your health care decisions, your family might find it difficult to make these decisions on your behalf. In such situations, the Ethics Committee is available to consult with you, your family, your authorized representative or your doctor.

    • What is the Ethics Committee?
      The Ethics Committee is a group of professionals, appointed by the hospital, who will consult with you to discuss the ethical aspects of your care and who will make recommendations if you wish. The committee includes doctors, nurses, an ethicist, a lawyer, a chaplain, a community representative and a senior administrator of the hospital. All members have training in medical ethics and also have practical experience in helping patients, families and doctors with difficult questions that might arise. Newport Hospital provides this service to you, your doctor and your family without charge.
    • What Kinds of Problems Does the Ethics Committee Help With?
      The Ethics Committee has helped patients, families and doctors with decisions about stopping treatment, about incompetent patients, and about interpretation of living wills. The committee welcomes the opportunity to help you by listening to your concerns, helping you gather information about your situation, evaluating the ethical questions about your treatment and providing guidance to you, your family and your doctor regarding the ethical principles and choices you and they might be faced with. The Ethics Committee will not make decisions for you or tell your doctor what to do.
    • Who May Request Help from the Ethics Committee?
      You and anyone who is involved with your care. For example, you or a family member could request help, as can your doctor, nurse, social worker or chaplain. Sometimes only one person may need to speak with the committee about a concern, and at other times several people might need to be involved in the discussions. The committee strives to determine the best possible way to consult in each individual situation, always mindful of the need for openness and always sensitive to your moral, legal, cultural, psychosocial, spiritual and personal concerns.
    • Is the Information About My Case Confidential?
      Yes. The Ethics Committee treats the facts of patients' cases with the strictest confidence. Your doctor will be involved in the decision making process, as well as your family or authorized representative. Depending on the nature of the situation, individual committee members or the entire committee may be called upon to provide information. Everyone involved respects your right to privacy and confidentiality.
    • How Do I Contact the Ethics Committee?
      If you believe a consultation with the committee would be helpful, you may ask your doctor or nurse to contact a committee member. You may also reach the committee through the Newport Hospital vice president of nursing and patient care services.