COMMENTARY

Are You an Ethical Physician? Take This Quiz

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Hello and welcome. I am Dr. George Lundberg, and this is At Large at Medscape.

Are you an ethical physician?

Based on statistics, chances are that you, the reader, are not a member of the American Medical Association (AMA). No matter. You are still subject to the Code of Medical Ethics of our AMA, long promulgated via its Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs.

From the time of its origin in [1847], creating a code of ethics has been a central function of the AMA.

Chew on these meaty morsels and test yourself honestly.

AMA Principles of Medical Ethics

I. A physician shall be dedicated to providing competent medical care, with compassion and respect for human dignity and rights.

II. 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.

III. 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.

IV. 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.

V. 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.

VI. 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.

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

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

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

How Did You Do?

Live it. Breathe it. You really don't have a choice if you represent yourself to be an ethical and licensed American physician. Ethics prevails. Licenses can be taken away.

That is my opinion. I am Dr. George Lundberg, for At Large at Medscape.

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