Ethics and law &Federal role in public health preparedness

Ethics and law &Federal role in public health preparedness




There are numerous end-of-life issues that we have all heard about in the news, but how are these laws established? Is it okay for patients and providers to make these decisions on their own? Aren’t these privileged physician/patient decisions? Explain your responses. How has the history of healthcare compliance changed since its inception? Hint: Look at how penalties have increased in various ways.

  • Ethics and law

Laws that govern the end of life processes are controlled by the federal government or authorities. Lawmakers draft these laws while others are common laws made by judges. The government in power can also establish regulatory requirements for federal governments. Differences exist in the enforcing these laws; it may be controlled by the civil systems or the administrative system. In the case of medicine, states can allow a relief for the incurably sick patients that doctors need to know while working in different states. (Kohlen, 2015)

Ill persons and providers should not decide to end life by themselves without involving doctors in their decision making.. The reasoning behind involving doctors is to make sure that both the provider and the sick person are aware about-about the decision being taken. It is also essential to give the providers and the patient information about the treatment being provided to the patient and its long-term effect. Adequate information enables the patient and the provider to make informed decisions thus facilitating the decision making process. (Sulivan, 2015)

The legislature and the jurisdiction regarding the healthcare directives have evolved in the past two decades. Advanced guidelines have been issued in special cases such as, for the terminally ill patients. The directives are issued for the medical treatment process in healthcare segments. Some of these directives require legal documents to be shared and maintained between the states. The laws also made way for the directive of affordable health care act to ensure that people get correct treatments and have given way for patient self determination act that provide patients right to refuse treatment. (Kohlen, 2015)

The key to the process of controlling the issues of fraud in the life-ending cases is the rule to have a medical surrogate for very ill patients who can’t make decisions on their own. The proxy may comprise several people who together take the decision on behalf of the patient. These may include: siblings, relatives, a person chosen by the patient to act on his behalf, spouse who are not separated, et cetera.

Hospitals in any state are faced with different threats to public health. In my local area, the hospitals have put up several measures to counter the threats. The type of risks that will be discussed here includes:

Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC): The aim of this service is to decrease infant and teenage mortality that occur due to fatal illness. They also provide well-integrated emergency medical service system supported by sufficient resources that include providing delicate care and primary control of disease. This service has seen a decrease of the incident cases enabling flexible measures to tackle accident and injury issues. (McSweeney-Field, 2017)

Healthcare-Associated Infection (HAI’s): In any institution of health care they need to be safe and preventing cross infection has been on the rise in awareness and experimentation based research to reduce its incidences. Besides these infections having an adverse personal effect on patients and families, they add to the nation’s increasing healthcare costs. The protocols and measures undertaken by the healthcare has shown to be useful in the protection of the population in the face of an imminent threat (Savoia, 2017).

2) Federal Role in Public Health Preparedness

Discuss the role of the US federal government and its agencies and departments in contrast to that of local and state public health agencies in preparing for and responding to public health emergencies.

It is the primary duty of the local government to protect its citizens during times of emergencies. Emergencies are handled at the lowest possible government level (Kohlen, 2015). At the local government level, police, fire, public health and medical emergency are services that are managed there. The state comes in where local government has insufficient resources and expertise to deal with a crisis.

The state government provides technical support, monetary aid, resources, and expertise required in the management of an emergency when its magnitude is a ripple. The federal government in the US has introduced the department of homeland security. It is responsible for protection and safety of the country and its citizens from Maillard natural and human-made disaster. The department also has an important role which involves ensuring border security, transportation emergencies preparedness, information, and technology(McSweeney-Field, 2017).

Within the department of homeland security there exists the federal emergency management agency (FEMA). FEMA primary role is to take actions to overcome the problems after emergencies. The different programs that FEMA has include food, hurricanes, dams, and earthquakes. FEMA works together with the federal government to overcome such calamities.

FEMA has a mitigation directorate responsible for pre-emergency actions. This ensures there are minimal loss of property and injuries by identifying and minimizing risks. The efforts by the branch ensure that minimum time is taken to recover the loss.


Kohlen, H. M. (2015). Decision-making processes in nursing and activities at the end of life in intensive care. An international comparative study, 28 (6), 329-338.

McSweeney-Field, M. H. (2017). Emergency preparedness content in healthcare administration problems: A Decade Later. Journal of Health Administration Education, 34 (1), 85-102.

Savoia, E. L. (2017). Public Health System Research in Public Health Emergency Preparedness in the United States(2009-2015): Actionable Knowledge Base. American Journal of Public Health, 107 (S2), e1-e6.

Sulivan, J. G. (2015). Parents and end of life decision making for their child: roles and responsibilities. BMJ supportive& Palliative care, 5 (3), 240-248.