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Author: Widian Nicola

Self-determination is a pathway by which individuals can safeguard as well as define their sense of safety. However, when an individual’s sense of safety is placed at risk, particularly within the context of community, safety can become illusive. Due to safety’s subjective nature, social workers and healthcare providers are invited to examine closely the roles they play to uphold a client’s self-determination, as well as manage risk as instruments of the healthcare programmes we represent, within the context of community and amid our clients’ challenging and oftentimes complex life circumstances. These ethical junctures offer practitioners an opportunity to examine how personal and collective ethical decisions are made, particularly through the lens of the ethics of care, which aims to place relationality at the forefront of the decision-making process. This clinical ethnographic narrative examines several ethical junctures I faced as the social worker to an elderly client diagnosed with schizophrenia.

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