In , the psychiatrist Charles K. Hofling conducted a field experiment on obedience in the nurse-physician relationship. The aim of this. Hospital Under Beds, Hospital Over Beds, Eldercare or Hospice Facility Home > August – Volume – Issue 2 > AN EXPERIMENTAL STUDY IN HOFLING CHARLES K. M.D.; BROTZMAN, EVELINE R.N, M.S.; Diagnosis of Ovarian Cancer and Object Relationships in Early Memories: A Pilot Study. In the original Hofling hospital experiment (). A person would telephone a nurse, saying that he was a doctor and giving a fictitious name, asking the nurse .

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Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. Although the nurses do have the option to withdraw from the experiment, they are unaware of this option and therefore, this is hodling ethical issue as the subjects have not had the experiment fully explained to them and this would imply deception was part of the planning of the Hospitla experiment. You may reference other guidelines you have researched. Confidentiality of hocling nurse was also considered as her experiemnt has not been mentioned, but on the other hand withdrawal from the investigation could have resulted in a worried or embarrassed participant.

The participants were all debriefed at the end of the study by a researcher within half an hour. However, the procedure is slightly ethical because the nurses are given a debrief half an hour after the investigation by a researcher. August 31, at 2: The researcher playing Doctor Smith used a written script to standardise the conversation and all conversations were recorded.

I would not let someone repeat this experiment today because there are many ethical problems with this investigation. However, the nurses expediment also influenced by the consequences for the experimeent if these would be serious, the nurses were more likely to take responsibility and challenge the order.

August 31, at 8: This would also be a necessary factor if expreiment experiment were to be replicated as patients involved may be insulted had they found out that their nurse willingly supplied them with a placebo overdose. The questionnaire proved that people are likely to lie when knowing that they are being monitored or judged.


In spite of official guidelines forbidding administration in such circumstances, Hofling found that 21 out of the 22 nurses would have given the patient an overdose of medicine.

I would let someone repeat Hoflings experiment, this is because overall i believe that the experiment was done mostly ethically, even though this was not the case one hundred percent of the time. Also, there was little deception and the expdriment nature of the researcher was revealed as early as possible, making the test fairly ethical. This is proved by the contrasting data from the questionnaires and the experiment as in the questionnaires all the nurses baring 2 said they would not have given the medication.

Overall, the measures put in place to counter the ethical issues convince me that it would be possible to run the experiment in the modern day.

Hofling – yes or no?

The results produced by this would be accurate as they would be recording natural experimsnt to something and could be compared with the questionnaire results and see if the element of knowing that is was an experiment would produce different results.

Sociological Factors in Crime. Most believed other nurses would behave in hospitql same way. An ISBN is assigned to each edition and variation of a book, for example, an e-book, a paperback and a hardcover edition of the same book would each have a different ISBN.

They were not supposed to take instructions by phone, let alone exceed the allowed dose The drug was a placebo. Do you admit answers about experiments about unusual obedience? The point was to take a nurse from their everyday life and place them in this situation for a spontaneous reaction; if the nurse had known about it they may have changed their answer or done something different to what they would have originally done to seem like the better person.

To find out more, including how to control cookies, see hoflingg It is difficult as the nurses have to decide whether to kill a patient or not. Their justification dxperiment they were just obeying orders of Nazi leaders. As a part of the experiment the nurses where all tricked into thinking they were in a difficult situation where as in reality it was a trick. Rank and Jacobson suggest that perhaps reduction in obedience may be partially due to cultural changes: March Learn how and when to remove this template message.


September 2, at Having said all this the experiment did take some ethical measures in the experiment like debriefing the nurses at the end of the study, these precautionary measures would have reduced the distress caused to nurses.

It could have been anyone on the phone and in a real life situation it may cause a deathly over dose to a patient from someone untrained ringing up.

Hofling hospital experiment – WikiVisually

Therefore a bit of deception and short lasting distress is worth it. Furthermore everyone makes mistakes or breaks a rule based on their instincts and although some may see what the nurses did was irresponsible and dangerous i think its unfair for us to judge them on their decision if we have never had to make a big decision like that before.

Finally the nurses are protected as giving a patient some medication is not dangerous. The telephone conversations were generally brief without much resistance from the nurses.

The nurses also were never named in Hoflings experiment and so would not be if somebody repeated the experiment today. By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you acknowledge that you have read our updated terms of serviceprivacy policy and cookie policyand that your continued use of the website is subject to these policies.

Hofling follows some, but not all of the ethical guidelines in psychological research.

I would not let someone repeat the experiment under the same conditions in this present day because certain aspects of it are not ethical. This suggests that it can cause distress and mental harm which is highly wrong.

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Last modified: December 27, 2019