Thursday, March 23, 2006

Professional Oaths

Don't ask me why the subject came to mind. I mean, I remember, but it's one of those stream-of-consciousness things that's too silly to explain, and that nobody would really care about, anyway, except the sort of person who likes to hear other people talk about their dreams at length. And I don't know any of those people.

Silly me, I thought the Hippocratic Oath began, "First, do no harm." Turns out that's a common misconception, but the Oath doesn't actually contain those words, anywhere in it. It starts (after the requisite summoning to witness of the gods) with an agreement - reckon him who taught me this Art equally dear to me as my parents, to share my substance with him, and relieve his necessities if required...
And so on. This is partly the usual loyalty oath (see the first several of the Ten Commandments, for instance), partly a measure to ensure the continuance of the art of medicine. Then there's a longer bit, addressing proper practice - "... for the benefit of my patients..." - and ethics -
I... will abstain from every voluntary act of mischief and corruption; and, further, from the seduction of females or males, of freemen and slaves.
Easier said than done, I'm sure.

And then, interestingly, there's a clause about maintaining patient privacy.

Let's look into the history of privacy sometime. I think I hold with those who advocate a constitutional amendment guaranteeing a right to privacy. Things are clearly out of hand. (I have no idea, of course, what such an amendment would look like, but I'm sure someone out there has published their notions. I'll get around to research later... maybe... if these production sound recordists would get out of their comfy chairs and do their jobs, then I'd have some free time...)

Relevance to what you were looking for, if you were referred to this page by a search engine: 0.


Post a Comment

<< Home