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Date Submitted: 11/24/2012 06:32 AM

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Mihaela Enescu

Mihaela Enescu

Dignity and choice


Dignity is a person's right to be treated like a human being. When we talk about human dignity, we mean human rights. If people are treated with dignity, they usually have the right to make choices for themselves.Dignity also means people are treated with respect. When we talk about dignity of the elderly, for example, we mean treating them like adults and not like children. Dignity involves privacy as well. People often feel that their dignity is compromised when their privacy is taken away.

“Dignity applies equally to those who have in care situations, dignity may be promoted or diminished by the physical environment; organisational culture; by the attitudes and behaviour of the nursing team and others and by the way in which care activities are carried out.” (www.nhs.uk )

When dignity is present people feel in control, valued, confident, comfortable and able to make decisions for themselves. When dignity is absent people feel devalued, lacking control and comfort. They may lack confidence and be unable to make decisions for themselves. They capacity and to those who lack it. Everyone has equal worth as human beings and must be treated as if they are able to feel, think and behave in relation to their own worth or value.

Dignity at meal times in a care home:

An example of dignity at mealtimes is giving to your service as many choices as possible. Let the person choose unless their choice can cause them harm or can harm others. For example, let a person pick a fresh fruit for their snack. That shows them you respect their decision and you are not trying to control them. People don't lose their right to take part in decisions about their lives just because they they have moved into a care home.

The time when they want to have their meal is also an example of dignity; you are not trying to force them to have their meal now so that shows them you respect their decision.

Another example of...