Medical ethics describes the moral principles by which a physician should behave. You need to understand the concept of medical ethics when you apply to medical school, but you`re not supposed to be an expert. Over the past century, there have been a number of developments in medicine that have revolutionized the field of medical practice. This makes it possible to diagnose diseases faster and more accurately. However, as new treatments are introduced and the field changes, healthcare professionals face new legal and ethical challenges. This blog gives you an overview of the topics of work in healthcare. The Ethics in Medicine website is an educational resource for clinicians in training. The Website is hosted and maintained by the Department of Bioethics and Humanities at the University of Washington School of Medicine. The topics, cases and resources discussed here are intended to be used as a resource by the UWSOM community and to complement or support other teaching and learning methods throughout the program. It is not designed to answer clinical, professional, legal or ethical questions specific to the patient. The information contained on the website is not intended to replace professional advice and is subject to copyright. One of the biggest legal and ethical issues in healthcare is patient confidentiality, which is why 15% of respondents said doctor-patient confidentiality is their most important ethical issue in the practice of medicine. Physicians are required to secure and protect the confidentiality of all patient records.
Under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), violations may result in suspension and termination. Obtaining the patient`s consent is crucial, as without them, any medical procedure can be an attempt to establish harmful or offensive contact with the patient. Deontology is also called “ethics of duty”. This ideology states that the right course of action depends on your duties and obligations. This means that the morality of an action is based on the fact that you followed the rules, not the consequence of following them. It should be known that medical ethics is a changing ideal. Something that was considered ethical 30 years ago may not be ethical today – and what we think is ethical today may change in the future. There is no other solution: ethical questions will arise. Important ethical talking points are rarely simple, and there are no right and wrong answers.
It is important that, in a patient-centred system of care, ethics be at the forefront. Best medical practices are based on legal and ethical principles that guide decisions made by physicians and health care providers when caring for patients or conducting research. The fundamental ethical principles of medicine are autonomy, charity, non-evil and justice. In order for a patient to be able to make decisions about their health care, they must demonstrate their mental abilities and competencies. If these are missing, the patient may have a surrogate who makes decisions for them. Non-emancipated minors are unable to make medical decisions on their own and must therefore ask a parent or guardian to make decisions for them. The patient has the right to full disclosure of his or her state of health, state of health, medical records and participation in research protocols. End-of-life problems include medical euthanasia, organ donation and pronunciation of death. The doctor is legally and ethically required to keep patients` medical information confidential and can only violate this confidentiality in certain situations. Social factors that may need to be considered include driving bans, elder abuse, and torture.
Patients should be informed of all treatment options, including potential risks and benefits, prior to treatment or medical intervention. Conflicts of interest arise when an external factor (such as payment from a pharmaceutical company) affects the physician`s ability to make an objective medical decision. Medical research must also be conducted according to ethical principles, and there are specific guidelines for research on vulnerable populations (e.g. pregnant women, children, prisoners). Here are some important examples of medical ethics to keep in mind for your interview: Overcoming an ethical problem in medicine is not black and white as it is with licit/illegal acts. Let`s look at some of the key medical-ethical issues facing health workers today. See if you`re willing to address ethics in your job interview Whenever a patient is treated, there are always medical-ethical issues to negotiate. Issues related to waiting lists, access to medical resources and decisions about the right treatment pose ethical dilemmas. Note: Ethics is not the same as legality. Something may be unethical, but completely legal.
Rapid developments in the medical field over the past century have revolutionized the field of medical practice. It is now possible to diagnose diseases faster and more accurately through advanced diagnostic techniques. Medical management has become more effective because refined drugs have more specific effects and fewer side effects. Surgical treatment has evolved towards less invasive treatment methods with lower morbidity and faster recovery. Among all these developments, the medical profession in India is at a crossroads and faces many ethical and legal challenges in the practice of the profession. The medical profession is increasingly dependent on technology and market forces tend to influence physicians` decision-making. The core values of medicine emphasize that the physician`s duty is to put patients` interests above all else. Important issues of autonomy, confidentiality, justice, charity, and non-malevolence are key factors that should guide the physician`s day-to-day decision-making. These choices may include a simple choice of antibiotics for an infection or the best medications for high blood pressure or hypercholestremia. It is becoming more complex and involves major ethical concerns in organ transplants, clinical trials, genetic manipulation, end-of-life issues or assisted reproduction techniques.
However, the ethical principles remain the same for all of the above situations. The Ethical Guidelines of Medical Practice of the Medical Council of India (Professional Conduct, Etiquette and Ethics) Regulations, 2002 aim to strengthen ethical standards among licensed physicians in India. The most important legal issues in the health system are medical negligence, informed consent and confidentiality. Here are some legal issues that regularly affect the health care system: Every day, patients, families and health care professionals are faced with ethical and legal choices. These difficult dilemmas can involve medical treatments, practices, hospital management and other issues that arise in the health care sector. Ethical issues in healthcare may require an immediate response, such as: Making decisions for patients when they are unable to do so or require a long and well-considered decision, such as the debate over the right to abortion or assisted suicide. Actions taken on ethical issues in health care clearly distinguish between right and wrong, and often many of the actions taken today can have a lasting impact on health care in the future. Multilingual parents are not acceptable alternatives to professional interpreters in the medical community. Example: You have a sum of money to fund either a very expensive treatment for a patient with a rare disease or five patients with a very common and easily treatable disease.
Utilitarian ethics dictate that the treatment of the five patients is morally superior because a greater overall benefit is obtained. Ethical issues often involve confidentiality, informed consent, and patient-physician relationships. Here are some of the ethical issues that often arise in the health care system: One of the best ways to develop your understanding of medical ethics is to practice analyzing situations in relation to ethical frameworks and ideologies. You can do this yourself, with a teacher, or with another medical school candidate who can give you their perspective and share ideas. Try to compare the results of different frameworks and consider their impact. Every day, patients, families and healthcare professionals are confronted with ethical and legal decisions about medical treatments, practices, hospital management and other issues that arise in the healthcare sector.