Thank you for your thoughts on your discussion on privacy and confidentiality. What are the ethical principles that impact your decision process? professor J
The issue of whether the patient has the right to know the HIV status is an ethical dilemma., However, it is important to consider the right to privacy for health care providers. Diseases such as HIV/AIDS have been associated with cases of social stigmatization despite the progress that has been made in medicine. Therefore, disclosing the information to the patient might have significant repercussions to the health care delivery process. Therefore, the issue of disclosure is should be approached from a multi-dimensional approach that will consider all aspects. There are various strategies that can be put in place to protect the safety of the patients. The decision by the doctor to withdraw from the operations and other surgical operations was a responsible act to take. Therefore, it can become a requirement that physicians that have HIV or other infectious diseases remove themselves from practices that might put the patient at risk of infection. The decision to withdrawal oneself should then only be communicated to the employer who will be required by law to keep the information confidential. It is important to also protect the rights of privacy for physicians as it is a basic human right that they should enjoy., Physicians should have the choice of whether to disclose the information or not.
According to Jacobson (2009), the risk of infection from a surgeon to a patient is significantly low. The rate is at 2.4 to 24 episodes of transmission per 1 million procedures. The risk of infection form an infected surgeon is thus small. Therefore, it may seem inappropriate top require the surgeon to disclose a low-risk condition.