You will prepare and submit a term paper on Doctor-Patient Confidentiality. Your paper should be a minimum of 3000 words in length. A patient can be forthright with his doctor when he knows that he can trust his doctor with the intimate details of his life. These intimate details often make a difference in the accuracy of the care administered to the patient. There may be instances however, when a doctor or a medical professional may be tempted to breach this agreement. This may be seen in the case of a doctor testing a patients blood and later uncovering that the patient has AIDS. A patient may request that his wife not be informed of his condition. In this case, an ethical dilemma is created and we are prompted to ask: Should the doctor honor the patients request, or should he tell the wife? This paper shall now attempt to answer this query, using a theoretical and careful assessment of the subject matter. It shall also attempt to settle this issue based on a thorough and logical consideration of its critical discussion points. AIDS is one of the most volatile diseases in the world. There is currently no cure for it and the management of its symptoms has not reached effective standards for the people to declare safety against contamination from this disease. AIDS is acquired through sexual intercourse with an infected person or through the sharing of needles with infected persons (AIDS.org, 2010). Mothers who breastfeed their babies can also transmit the disease to their babies. In this case, the husband has a high possibility of later infecting (if he has not done so already) his wife with AIDS. This is a crucial dilemma for the doctor. As the doctor honors his confidentiality agreement with the patient, he is placing the wife in danger of being infected by the husbands virus. Doctor-patient confidentiality is a patient privilege protected by the laws. It is incumbent upon the doctor to keep patient information private, lest suffer the legal consequences of his actions. The settlement of any ethical dilemma in health care involves four basic ethical principles, namely, autonomy, non-maleficence, justice, and beneficence.
Term paper on Doctor-Patient Confidentiality
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