The concept of professional responsibility can be termed as upholding a due care approach to patient care by accepting the standards of professional care and what is expected as a professional. Professional responsibility is best described with a simple expression by theologian Richard Niebuhr, who states professional responsibility is achieved by the sum of personal accountability and responsiveness. Citation. In order to truly grasp the core intentions of professional responsibility, it is necessary to explain the underlying terms of accountability and responsiveness. An individual who upholds professional responsibility is expected to be accountable for one’s actions. It is expected to not only be capable of acting with professional knowledge but also be able to act unhindered. The counterpart to accountability is the responsiveness of one’s due care approach (Purtilo 39). Responsiveness captures a deeper understanding of a person one is accountable for by willingly engaging with others in an attentive manner (39). One cannot express the responsibility of a professional by doing one or the other, rather both terms are linked and work together to achieve what is expected as a professional towards a particular purpose. A topic of interest in Ruth Purtilo’s Ethical Dimensions in the Health Profession is a caring approach rested on professional responsibility.
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