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Breach of Confidentiality - Essay Example

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Patient confidentiality denotes that the patient’s records will not be revealed to anyone unless permitted by the patient. This, however, is becoming incredibly…
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Breach of Confidentiality
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Download file to see previous pages This means that a physician cannot reveal any information of the patient during the course of treatment unless under the patients approval. The essence of physician’s responsibility is to preserve patients’ confidentiality, and help them to be open and able to give all the information regarding their health status. This is done with the assurance that the physician will safeguard such personal information. The honest revelation by the patient provides for a proper and effective treatment of the condition. There are, however, exemptions, for instance, if a patient may hurt others or himself or herself.
A breach of confidentiality refers to the revelation of the patients’ medical information to another person without the patients’ permission by a physician or medical health expert. The revelation can be electronically, through word of mouth, or through writing. Thus, the physician’s responsibility of safeguarding the patients’ medical records sometimes has to relent to the interests of the whole.
 In Estate of Behringer v Princeton Medical Centre (1990), the late Behringer, working as a surgeon at the medical centre, suffered from AIDS. Behringer received treatment from the same hospital. His chart containing information about his diagnosis was not safeguarded at the nurses’ location on the floor where it was kept.
The exposure of the information on his diagnosis revealed his medical condition, making the hospital necessitate his patients to sign a form recognizing the dangers to their health. Eventually, this resulted to the deferral of the doctor’s surgical rights (McHale, 1993). The inability of the hospital to protect his personal medical information led to Behringer’s estate suing the hospital for breach of confidentiality.
The breach of confidentiality occurred in the sense that the hospital was supposed to safeguard the chart containing the surgeon’s diagnosis information. However, they instead left the chart ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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