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Shaping Professionalism: Medical Oaths and Codes of Ethics [Insert Name of Presenter]

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Presentation on theme: "Shaping Professionalism: Medical Oaths and Codes of Ethics [Insert Name of Presenter]"— Presentation transcript:

1 Shaping Professionalism: Medical Oaths and Codes of Ethics [Insert Name of Presenter]

2 Instructions for Presenter To modify this presentation, copy to your desktop and keep this master copy for reference. Each slide contains talking points and notes for the presenter that can be viewed and printed out for easy reference. To view notes, go to “View” on the tool bar and click on “Notes Page.” The presentation includes a set of Ethical Scenarios (slides 15-55) from which you can retain those that are of the most interest to your audience.

3 Presentation Outline History of medical oaths and codes Awareness and understanding of the AMA’s Code of Medical Ethics Relevancy of selected Code Opinions Strengthening professionalism’s future

4 Hippocratic Oath “I swear by Apollo the Physician…to keep according to my ability and judgment the following oath” “I will prescribe regimen for the good of my patients according to my ability and my judgment and never do harm to anyone” The Oath of Hippocrates of Kos, 5th Century BC

5 Medical Oaths Personal ethic of oaths Medicine’s moral mandate, the duty to care for the sick, is reflected in the conduct of physicians with good character Notion of binding covenant: “If I keep this oath faithfully, may I enjoymy life and practice my art, respected by all men and in all times; but if I swerve from it or violate it, may the reverse be my lot.”

6 Medical Codes Professional ethics of codes Developed through a process of collaboration, consensus, and finally codification Notion of professional self-regulation

7 AMA’s Code of Medical Ethics 1847 Edition 2001 Edition

8 AMA’s Code of Medical Ethics The Code first drafted by Drs. Bell and Hays was based on Percival’s conceptions of professional ethics A “living” compendium of ethical guidelines for physicians that is continually revised and updated by the Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs The Code is freely accessible at:

9 Awareness of the Code Routinely cited in legal cases and frequently referenced by judges, lawyers, legal scholars, and state licensing boards Ironically, physicians are generally unaware of the ethical guidance embodied in the Code Illustrative examples: - Capital punishment - Physician-assisted suicide

10 Capital Punishment Disallowed actions include: Starting intravenous lines for lethal injection drug Determining death during execution Administering the lethal drug Supervising personnel who give the lethal drug

11 Capital Punishment Disallowed actions include: Ordering lethal drugs for the prison pharmacy Maintaining or inspecting lethal injection devices Monitoring vital signs during execution Selecting injection sites for lethal drugs

12 Physician Attitudes about Capital Punishment 80% indicated that at least 1 of the disallowed actions was acceptable 53% indicated that 5 or more were acceptable 34% approved all 8 disallowed actions

13 Physician-Assisted Suicide Physician-assisted suicide is fundamentally incompatible with the role of physician as healer Instead, physicians must aggressively and compassionately respond to the needs of patients at the end of life

14 Physician Attitudes about Physician-Assisted Suicide Of 658 physicians from a national sample: 44% favored legalization of PAS 34% opposed 22% unsure Of 315 physicians from AMA’s HOD: 23% favored legalization of PAS 62% opposed 15% unsure


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