Truthfulness and confidentiality Essay exist in a rather uneasy tension, both in biology and the rest of human life. On one hand, every social cooperation depends on truthful communication, while on the contrary, telling everything could lead to disaster. For the sake of human relationships, people tend to keep negative comments to themselves, and only speak thing that is positive. For that, two things are considered. That is, telling the truth is not the same as telling the whole truth, and some truths should be kept confidential. However, it’s hard to decide what may ethically be concealed and what must be revealed.
In truthfulness, the ethics are summed up in two commands, that does not lie, and one must communicate with those people who have a right to the truth. Compared to the life’s complex problems, these commands are too simple. Essentially what they are saying is if you communicate do not lie, and you must communicate if the other person has a right to communication. The first command leaves one with the freedom of choosing whether to speak, and the second one opens up a question of who has a right to communication. Truthfulness and confidentiality Essay
Apparently, truthfulness and lying go hand in hand. Traditionally, a lie was defined as something communicated against the mind, in that the speaker told the opposite of what he believed to be true. It was considered wrong unless used for this like play acting, teaching or for humor. When one is asked something, they have the freedom of choosing how they will reply. However, when one offers to give information, it’s taken that he is telling the truth but not necessarily the whole truth. For example, when a health care worker uses mass media to pass out medical news, the information must be accurate, give full disclosure and enjoy editorial independence.
One of the principles of truthfulness is the right to the truth. A patient has a right to the truth to give consent for medical decisions about treatment, or just because they have paid for it. Another circumstance might not be medically related, like when the person is about to die. Religious thinkers believe that the individual needs to know to make peace with God, and also due to personal matters like saying goodbye to their families, or making peace with their enemies. Truthfulness and confidentiality Essay
Then there is the placebo problem. A placebo can be defined as anything used to effect a therapeutic outcome. Chemically, it should not have an effect. The ethical issue is, does the use of placebo involve unethical deception of the patient? For a drug to work, someone must believe in it. Most illnesses are psychological. If a placebo is deceptive or not, depends on the exact way in which it is presented. It’s all about giving the mind positive ideas and assuring the patient of a recovery.
Confidentiality is all about keeping secrets. Everyone has an obligation of what they put out on others, putting in mind if that particular thing can bring harm to them. An example is revealing that a friend has AIDS without their consent. Thy may suffer psychological and emotional trauma.
A doctor is permitted to consult on the condition of their patient unless the patient restricts. In some cases, the patient should be able to pay for that consultation, and the third party is expected to maintain the same level of confidentiality. The hospital rooms need to be private enough, and not every doctor can go snooping in every patient’s file to satisfy their curiosity. The only time the principle of confidentiality can be breached is when there is a need to know, rooted in a professional contribution to the treatment of the patient or the public. Even for interns, residents or other students, they are not allowed to look into medical charts unless the patient agrees to it.
There are a number of exceptions to the principle of confidentiality, one being exceptions from legal precedent. In certain instances, one is obliged to disclose information to comply with a statutory requirement. For example, giving out information concerning certain communicable diseases. In this case, one does not require the consent of a patient. Even so, one should not disclose personal information about who the relatives are or partners of the patient, since they are not relevant.
There are also the exceptions due to proportionality. There must be a good reason for someone to be allowed to reveal information that harms the patient or society as a whole. For example, a doctor cannot reveal to a wife that her husband has syphilis, even though she is at risk of getting infecting. Nor should the doctor inform the doctor that this wife is pregnant, or planning an abortion. Truthfulness and confidentiality Essay
Children and adolescents are also protected. If the information can somehow harm their health, their parents are not supposed to be told. That may include issues like drug abuse, abortion or sexually transmitted diseases. A patient, once treated, still retains rights to his or her medical information. That means that for any research, the hospital might want to confirm, the patient has to give consent. The issue that bears many thoughts is the on surrounding AIDS patients. Medical practitioners feel the need to tell their colleagues of a patient with the disease, but still that person holds the right to confidentiality of her condition.
Professional secrecy should be taken seriously and upheld since its violation harms not only the patient but also the sacredness of promises and good of the profession and the society at large. Professional secrets should only be shared in cases where there are proper statutory or court-imposed exceptions.
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