Becoming critical professional beings: the ethics and politics of student engagement Julie Wintrup and Kelly Wakefield 4 th July 2013 University of Brighton.
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Becoming critical professional beings: the ethics and politics of student engagementJulie Wintrup and Kelly Wakefield4th July 2013University of Brighton
‘Can any of us be fully confident that we would neverneglect a patient, bully a colleague or collude with an unethical organisational culture?’
asks Ann Gallagher, Reader in nursing ethics, Surrey, in the Nursing Times…
‘..nurses who have unmet needs are more likely to collude with uncaring practices; and a lack of ethics education, leadership and role modeling contributes to moral erosion in practice…’
What do we know about ‘ethics education’ in health professions?
‘…two things jump out here around 'ethics educations': one is a lack of education in that all 'study time' goes into mandatory training which is bilge no matter how hard the trainers try to make it meaningful, they are limited by CNST* and sends out the message 'don't think, be corporate, obey' and the apparent lack of ethics within the ethos of Trusts to support anyone with an ethical notion in their head…’
NT comments. Anon.
*Clinical Negligence Scheme for Trusts
To reflect, discuss in safety, compare notes, draw abstracts from concrete, generalise
Can we infer that the aim of ‘ethics education’ is to affect the individual in their relationships with others- whether through inculcation of theories, personal moral development or professionalisation / socialisation processes?
If so how does it prepare us for what Francis (and so many others) have found?
‘…whistleblowing should be considered central to any medical ethics emphasising professional virtues and conscience’
They consider the ‘paucity of professional or academic interest in this area and examine the counterinfluence of a continuing historical tradition of guild mentality professionalism that routinely places relationships with colleagues ahead of patient safety’
She said she had tried to raise standards and prepared a report but the information had been 'hushed up', forcing her to go to the BBC.
'I understood that I was breaching patient confidentiality but I thought my actions were justified,' she added.
'I only wanted to help people. I am a very caring and compassionate person.'
How does ‘ethics education’ prepare us for what Francis (and so many others) have found?
“It was not the single rogue professional who delivered poor care in Stafford, or a single manager who ignored patient safety, who caused the extensive failure that has been identified. There was a combination of factors, of deficienciesthroughout the complexity that is the NHS, which produced the vacuumin which the running of the trust was allowed to deteriorate”
‘Therefore, the true picture is notone of weak leadership being provided by a particular consultant, but of a systemthat may well have ground down a conscientious practitioner into a seriously pressurised man and of a management failure to ensure proper support for clinical staff to enable good leadership’
Francis 1st report
‘..radical dependency is .. how I connect, get responded to, get recognised, fail to get recognised..by others.
Others can humiliate, harm, devalue, degrade…and I think that’s where human life is lived, in those relationships of intersubjectivity..’
Locating the specific within the bigger picture - not taking for granted everyone watches news, reads, follows twitter!
“Critical persons are more than just critical thinkers. They are able critically to engage with the world and with themselves as well as with knowledge”
Critical being requires knowledge (critical reason), the self (critical reflection) and the world (critical action)
Developing ethical awareness, sensitivity – improving our ‘antennae’ (Fenwick)
Create safe places, times for students / learners to discuss their experiences, check out worries, concerns, develop their antennae..