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Ethical and Philosophical Aspects of Nursing Children and Young People

Ethical and Philosophical Aspects of Nursing Children and Young People

Gosia M. Brykczynska, Joan Simons

ISBN: 978-1-444-39204-3 January 2011 Wiley-Blackwell 288 Pages




Nurses and healthcare professionals are constantly faced with ethical and philosophical dilemmas when working with children in everyday practice. Ethical and Philosophical Aspects of Nursing Children and Young People is a comprehensive text on the ethics and philosophy behind paediatric nursing that reflects the contemporary issues encountered while working with children and young people.

The title provides a philosophical and historical analysis of the subject, looking at a review of sociological and political theories concerning the nature of childhood, and providing a critical analysis of contemporary notions about childhood. It then goes on to look at moral theories and their application to paediatric nursing practice, ethical issues when caring for children of all ages, from infancy to adolescence. It considers issues of disabled children, confidentiality, mental health issues, children's rights, and pain management. With case studies and activities throughout, this book will enable students and newly qualified nurses both to understand philosophical concepts and issues but also to articulate their own reflections and observations on these subjects.

  • Written by children's nurses for children's nurses
  • With contributions from internationally recognised experts in the field
  • Reflective scenarios, further reading, extensive referencing, case studies, guided questions, and resources throughout
  • Includes appendices on the RCPCH Guidelines on Withdrawal of Treatment, the ICN Ethical Code, the Summary of the UNCRC, and the RCPCH Guidelines for the Conduct of Ethical Research
Notes on Contributors.




Part I The Philosophical Foundations of Caring for Children and Young People.

1 Histories and Philosophies of Childhood (Gosia Brykczyńska).

2 Theories of Moral Philosophy Applied to Paediatric Nursing (Gosia Brykczyńska).

3 A Review of Children's Rights as Applied to Paediatric Nursing (Jim Richardson).

Part II Ethical Aspects of the Continuum of Care.

4 Beginning of Life: Ethical Issues in Neonatology Nursing (Amanda Williamson and Julie Mullett).

5 Ethical Issues in Caring for Toddlers and School Age Children: Ethical Aspects of the Role and Work of the Health Visitor (Monica Davis).

6 Promoting the Health of School-Aged Children: An Ethical Perspective (Gill Coverdale).

7 'To Be Like the Others': Children's Views of Nursing in Community Settings (Duncan Randall).

8 Care of the Severely Disabled Child: A Moral Imperative (Vicki Rowse).

9 Ethical Aspects of Care of the Adolescent (Yvonne Dexter).

10 Ethical and Legal Aspects of Working with Children and Young People with Emotional and Psychiatric Health Needs (Tim McDougall).

Part III Ethical Issues in the Acute Care Setting.

11 Children's Experience of Hospitalisation and Their Participation in Health-Care Decision-Making (Imelda Coyne).

12 The Ethics of Family-Centred Care for Hospitalised Children (Linda Shields).

13 Above All Else do No Harm: An Ethical Evaluation of Paediatric Nurses Management of Children's Pain (Joan Simons).

14 Ethical Aspects in Children's and Young People's Cancer Care: Professional Views (Faith Gibson).

15 Withholding and Withdrawal of Treatment: Ethical, Legal and Philosophical Aspects of Paediatric Intensive Care Nursing (Karen Harrison-White).

16 Palliative Care of Children: Some Ethical Dilemmas (Vicki Rowse and Martin Smith).

Part IV Philosophical Considerations in Professional Practice.

17 Researching Children and Young People: Exploring the Ethical Territory (Bernie Carter).

18 Philosophical and Epistemological Aspects of Children's Spirituality (Rita Pfund).

19 'Are you Sitting Comfortably?' Storytelling and the Power of Narratives – A Philosophical Analysis (Gosia Brykczyńska).

20 Who is Shaping Children's Nursing? (Duncan Randall).


Appendix I Summary of Possible Situations for Withdrawal and Withholding Treatment in Children According to the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health Guidelines.

Appendix II United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (Abridged).

Appendix III Summary of the International Council of Nurses Ethical Code.

Appendix IV Summary of the Principles for the Ethical Conduct of Medical Research Involving Children.


""This textbook should become a core text for CYP nursing."" (Nursing Children and Young People, 1 November 2011)

""This well-written resource addressing the ethical and moral issues arising in the care of children is a welcome addition to nursing literature on the care of children."" (Doody's, 26 August 2011)