Ethical Issues in the Care of Emerging Adults in Pediatric Intensive Care Units

Author(s): Mary Brennan, MBE, RN, Melissa Uveges, PhD, MA, RN

Contact Hours 1.00

CERP B 1.00

Expires May 03, 2023

Topics: Cardiovascular, Ethics

Population: Pediatric

Member: Free
NonMember: $10.00

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Activity Summary

Required reading for all learners: Implicit Bias impacts patient outcomes

Using an example of an 18 year old with congenital heart disease who is unexpectedly admitted to a pediatric intensive care unit, this article demonstrates how emerging adults with chronic conditions present unique ethical challenges. The three components of informed consent are described with specific attention to evaluation of these elements in emerging adults. Challenges such as protecting patient privacy in the context of family centered care and addressing advanced care planning are also included.


  • Explain the term emerging adult and how caring for this population in pediatric settings presents unique ethical challenges.
  • Describe barriers to informed consent, privacy and advanced care planning among chronically ill emerging adults.
  • Identify at least two specific actions to promote the ethical care of emerging adults in pediatric settings

Continuing Education Disclosure Statement

Successful Completion

Learners must attend/view/read the entire activity and complete the associated evaluation to be awarded the contact hours or CERP. No partial credit will be awarded.


This activity has been reviewed by the Nurse Planner. It has been determined that the material presented here shows no bias. No conflicts of interest have been identified for any individual with the ability to influence the content of this activity. Accreditation refers to recognition of continuing education only and does not imply AACN or ANCC approval or endorsement of any commercial products discussed or displayed in conjunction with this educational activity.


The American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN) is accredited as a provider of nursing continuing professional development by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's (ANCC's) Commission on Accreditation, ANCC Provider Number 0012. AACN has been approved as a provider of continuing education in nursing by the California State Board of Nursing (CBRN), California Provider number CEP 1036. This activity is approved for 1.00 contact hours.

AACN programming meets the standards for most states that require mandatory continuing education contact hours for license and/or certification renewal. AACN recommends consulting with your state board of nursing or credentialing organization before submitting CE to fulfill continuing education requirements.

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