Australian Family Physician
Australian Family Physician


Volume 38, Issue 10, October 2009

The practice of confidentiality in an Aboriginal medical service What do GPs need to know?

Jenny James Sonya Cameron Tim Usherwood
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The medical ethic of confidentiality is usually taught from a western ethical perspective based on the Hippocratic oath. This study at an urban Aboriginal medical service aimed to explore how confidentiality is understood in a community controlled Aboriginal health service, with a view to informing the training of general practitioners.
Perspectives on confidentiality in this community included issues of social justice, the importance of public demonstrations of confidentiality, and the challenge of protecting all relationships when staff have multiple roles. Incorporation of community perspectives into the teaching of confidentiality may help doctors to understand the responsibilities of practising confidentiality in certain communities.
Six themes were identified: overlapping contexts of confidentiality, key sensitivities, sharing of patient information, importance of consent, multiple roles, and consequences of maintaining or breaching confidentiality.

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Printed from Australian Family Physician - https://www.racgp.org.au/afp/2009/october/confidentiality-in-an-aboriginal-medical-service
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