Health care practitioners urged to follow ethics
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
ETHICAL values between health practitioners and patients are central to healthcare practice in order to deliver efficient public services, said an official from the Ministry of Health.
Suhara Fazida Hj Md Yusop, Optometrist at the Raja Isteri Pengiran Anak Saleha (RIPAS) Hospital, said that health practitioners should build professional work relationships with their patients and follow ethical standards in the organisation.
Suhara, who is also the Head of Complaints Management and Discipline, Interim Committee for Allied Health Professions Council of Brunei Darussalam, was responding to a question from audience during the launching of the Allied Health Association and the Allied Health Forum 2015 yesterday.
To a query from the Clinical Psychologist Committee Health on the status of practitioners’ relationship with clients (patients) outside clinical sessions, Suhara said relationships between practitioners and patients are prohibited.
“I think that is kind of common sense…It is within the Services Work Ethic (Etika Kerja Perkhidmatan) that you have to respect and cannot build a relationship between practitioners and the patients.
You cannot have the relationship that will affect your profession. You cannot be romantically involved with your patients,” said Suhara.
The optometrist explained that an ethical value portray the practitioner’s profession to clients in an acceptable way.“If you think that it is wrong, don’t do it,” she said, adding that revealing to your fellow practitioners
about the confidentiality of a patient is morally wrong.
“When we have guidance to follow, we have professional boundaries. Having these boundaries, we will not breach our ethical values,” said Suhara.
She said that ethic is a sign of moral principle – how you behave as a person. Suhara highlighted some of the ethical values that are needed to guarantee good clinical practice. They are honesty, transparency,
trustworthy, wise, knowledgeable and sharing of information to others.
“To have high ethical values, we can have professional relationships based on trust. Our patients will trust us to let us do our job,” she added.
When one deviates from ethical values, Suhara said, it portrays poor ethical conducts such as harassment, use of violent language, threats, bullying and eco-violence. “We, as allied health professionals
have professional reputations to impart. We must scrutinise that our professional conduct can affect our reputation and profession,” she added.
“The way we behave says a lot of who we are….the profession that we are representing and also the organisation. If our reputation is at stake, patients will no longer trust us and we cannot be able to do our job effectively,” said Suhara.
In his address, the Minister of Health Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Johan Pahlawan Dato Seri Setia Hj Adanan Begawan Pehin Siraja Khatib Dato Seri Setia Hj Md Yusof said the launching of the Allied Health Forum 2015 would explain the important components as guidance for new members of the association to achieve the standard of professionalism and be able to work professionally in their daily work.
The minister said that the forum is a platform to strengthen and improve service delivery performance to the community while providing the members to organise future dialogues to share information and experiences with one another.
“The forum is an opportunity to share information and experiences in the various aspects of scientific research, entrepreneurship in generating welfare activities through collaboration or networking, not only in Brunei, but also regional and international, as well as promoting various areas of professions,” added the Health Minister.
The Brunei Times