In this presentation, I will describe a project, in which we investigated how we could improve ethical decision-making around referral and admission to intensive care, a decision-making process that has received considerable attention during the current COVID-19 pandemic. I will describe how we investigated current decision-making processes (in 2015/16), then developed a decision support framework for clinicians and tested its feasibility in three NHS Trusts. I will share some of the challenges we faced in translating ethics into day-to-day clinical decision-making in a way that was both meaningful to clinicians and underscored the ethical basis of the decision-making process.
Anne Slowther is Professor of Clinical Ethics at the University of Warwick and a clinical ethicist at the University hospital of Coventry and Warwickshire. She leads the Values. Law and Ethics theme in the MBChB curriculum at Warwick. Her research interests are in the ethics of clinical decision-making; ethics of research involving vulnerable groups; and evaluation of clinical ethics support. She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the UK Clinical Ethics Network and of the Institute of Medical Ethics.