Medical Ethics - Basic Information
eth4.gif (10215 bytes) "Medicine is of all the arts the most noble... I will follow that system of regimen which, according to my ability and judgment, I consider for the benefit of my patients, and abstain from whatever is deleterious and mischievous." Hippocrates g) I solemnly pledge myself to consecrate my life to the service of humanity...I will practice my profession with conscience and dignity; the health of my patient will be my first consideration; (Oath of Geneva)

"Thou hast endowed man with the wisdom to relieve the suffering of his brother, to recognize his disorders, to extract the healing substances, to discover their powers and to prepare and to apply them to suit every ill. In Thine Eternal Providence Thou hast chosen me to watch over the life and health of Thy creatures." (Prayer of Moses Maimonides)
ACP Code of Ethics
AMA Ethics Site
American Society of Bioethics
basic ethics committee
basic info from U Washington
Bioethics Bulletin
Bioethics.Net
bioethics for clinicians
codes of ethics online
ethics committee core curriculum
resource list for ethics committees

Principles of medical ethics

Preamble

The medical profession has long subscribed to a body of ethical statements developed primarily for the benefit of the patient. As a member of this profession, a physician must recognize responsibility to patients first and foremost, as well as to society, to other health professionals, and to self. The following Principles adopted by the American Medical Association are not laws, but standards of conduct which define the essentials of honorable behavior for the physician. 

Principles of medical ethics 

  1. A physician shall be dedicated to providing competent medical care, with compassion and respect for human dignity and rights.
          
  2. A physician shall uphold the standards of professionalism, be honest in all professional interactions, and strive to report physicians deficient in character or competence, or engaging in fraud or deception, to appropriate entities.

     
  3. A physician shall respect the law and also recognize a responsibility to seek changes in those requirements which are contrary to the best interests of the patient. 

     
  4. A physician shall respect the rights of patients, colleagues, and other health professionals, and shall safeguard patient confidences and privacy within the constraints of the law.

     
  5. A physician shall continue to study, apply, and advance scientific knowledge, maintain a commitment to medical education, make relevant information available to patients, colleagues, and the public, obtain consultation, and use the talents of other health professionals when indicated. 

     
  6. A physician shall, in the provision of appropriate patient care, except in emergencies, be free to choose whom to serve, with whom to associate, and the environment in which to provide medical care.

     
  7. A physician shall recognize a responsibility to participate in activities contributing to the improvement of the community and the betterment of public health. 

     
  8. A physician shall, while caring for a patient, regard responsibility to the patient as paramount.

     
  9. A physician shall support access to medical care for all people.