Grief Without Consent Grief Counseling: Case Study

Length: 3 pages Sources: 1+ Subject: Business - Ethics Type: Case Study Paper: #58643093 Related Topics: Deception, Medical Assistant, Placebo, Confidentiality
Excerpt from Case Study :

Had they been informed of the real subject of the experiment, the seminary students may have behaved differently. Ethical misinformation was part of the construct -- their moral reactions, just as in the grief study, were being observed.

However, the relationship between doctor and patient is a particularly sacred one, given that patients must feel free to confide in their doctors. The emotionally vulnerable state of the subjects calls for special care on the part of researchers. While one could argue that the greatest good for the greatest number was being conducted by doing the study, the harm this could do to the patient-doctor relationship would be so detrimental to society no possible information revealed by the study could defend the deception that was practiced. For example, after the study is revealed it is possible a patient might read the research and feel shocked by the researcher's lack of ethics. That person might not reveal his or her grief to a doctor after the death of a loved one, and fall into a deep and untreated depression -- or worse. Unless a person poses a danger to himself or others, confidentiality can and must be respected, so doctors can ascertain a complete picture of a patient's medical history.

Professional ethics differ from profession to profession -- the ethics of an undercover reporter are different from those of a doctor or a therapist. While the personal life of a politician is debatably fair game for a journalist, it is not ethically valid for a researcher to publish personal information without the individual's consent, or his or her family's consent. (Other examples of different ethical contexts include a lawyer who is not ethically bound to present both sides of a story equally to a jury, versus a journalist who is trust that exists between patients and the medical profession treating the public's physical and mental health. No supposed utilitarian gain by any single study violating such conditions could be worth the erosion of trust in the physician-patient relationship (McEntarffer & Weseley 23).

Works Cited

Garret, Don. Buddy, Can You Spare the Time?" Quimper Unitarian Universalist

Fellowship. 2006. Retrieved June 2, 2009 at http://www.quuf.org/sermons/archives/2006-2007/garrett.pdf.

McEntarffer, Robert & Allyson Weseley. Barron's AP Psychology. New York:

Barron's Educational Series, 2007

Sources Used in Documents:

Works Cited

Garret, Don. Buddy, Can You Spare the Time?" Quimper Unitarian Universalist

Fellowship. 2006. Retrieved June 2, 2009 at http://www.quuf.org/sermons/archives/2006-2007/garrett.pdf.

McEntarffer, Robert & Allyson Weseley. Barron's AP Psychology. New York:

Barron's Educational Series, 2007


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