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Revista médica de Chile

Print version ISSN 0034-9887


BURROWS, Jaime et al. Respecting patient intimacy. Rev. méd. Chile [online]. 2014, vol.142, n.4, pp.506-511. ISSN 0034-9887.

Transparency as a general rule for all our professional acts casts doubts about the statement of the Hippocratic Oath that says "Whatever I see or hear in the lives of my patients, I will keep secret, as considering all such things to be private". Medical secrecy protects the intimacy of patients, who reveal to their physicians their most hidden secrets aiming to recover their health. Therefore, physicians should receive those secrets with reverence and care, as servers and not as their owners. The values associated with the respect for personal intimacy are the anthropological basis of medical confidentiality. A medical act is performed by definition between two equally honorable individuals. Therefore, the professional honors the trust of his patient, maintaining strict confidence of what is revealed. Therefore, medical secrecy must be strengthened rather than weakened, pursuing common wealth and dignity.

Keywords : Confidentiality; Hippocratic Oath; Personhood; Privacy.

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