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Friday, June 14, 2019

The Ethics of Treating Loved Ones

Christopher Cheney
www.medpagetoday.com
Originally posted May 19, 2019

When treating family members, friends, colleague, or themselves, ER physicians face ethical, professional, patient welfare, and liability concerns, a recent research article found.

Similar to situations arising in the treatment of VIP patients, ER physicians treating loved ones or close associates may vary their customary medical care from the standard treatment and inadvertently produce harm rather than benefit.

"Despite being common, this practice raises ethical concerns and concern for the welfare of both the patient and the physician," the authors of the recent article wrote in the American Journal of Emergency Medicine.

There are several liability concerns for clinicians, the lead author explained.


"Doctors would be held to the same standard of care as for other patients, and if care is violated and leads to damages, they could be liable. Intuitively, family and friends might be less likely to sue but that is not true of subordinates. In addition, as we state in the paper, for most ED physicians, practice outside of the home institution is not a covered event by the malpractice insurer," said Joel Geiderman, MD, professor and co-chairman of emergency medicine, Department of Emergency Medicine, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles.

The info is here.

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