ETHICS

Professionalism

Goal:

To always demonstrate attitudes and behaviors that display the highest degree of professionalism. To perform in a manner that displays a high degree of honesty, integrity, reliability and responsibility and to approach others with respect, compassion and empathy, while having continuous and critical insight into ones performance with dedicated to self-improvement and acknowledgment of ones limits. To maintain clear, effective and open communication and collaboration with other health care workers and colleagues. To remain dedicated to altruism and patient advocacy.

Objectives:

  • To understand the concepts behind honesty and integrity as related to the medical profession and to strive for these attributes all interactions with patients, families, peers and others.
  • Document and present all data truthfully and impartially without prejudice or bias.
  • Commit to always using risk-benefit, cost-benefit and evidence based considerations is all medical decision making.
  • To understand the concepts behind reliability and responsibility as related to the medical profession and to strive for these attributes all interactions with patients, families, peers and others.
  • To understand that patient safety, medical error reduction and infection control are the responsibility of everyone on the healthcare team.
  • Consistently and conscientiously follow-up on all clinical data and act upon and/or communicate this information in an appropriate manner.
  • To understand the concepts behind respect as related to the medical profession and to strive for these attributes all interactions with patients, families, peers and others.
  • To be constant and committed to caring for patients regardless of their socio-economic and socio-cultural background, ability to pay, race, gender, sexual orientation, religion or beliefs and medical diagnosis.
  • Value and uphold patient’s privacy and confidentiality always abiding by HIPAA standards.
  • Actively involve patients in their health care whenever possible with forthright discussions and explanations about their diagnosis and any subsequent diagnostic and therapeutic interventions.
  • Respect patient’s autonomy and right to refuse preventative, diagnostic and therapeutic interventions.
  • To understand the concepts behind compassion and empathy as related to the medical profession and to strive for these attributes all interactions with patients, families, peers and others.
  • To recognize and understand the barriers to adherence in the noncompliant patient and react in a suitable manner.
  • To realize and acknowledge how patient’s illnesses and subsequent diagnostic and therapeutic interventions affect their quality of life, mental and physical well-being and family.
  • Respect patient’s feelings, modesty, limitations and preferences.
  • To understand the concepts behind self-evaluation and self-directed learning as related to the medical profession and to strive for continuous improvement in your profession.
  • Understand the importance of continuous quality improvement.
  • Seek feedback in regards to performance and take initiative to respond in an appropriate and productive manner.
  • To understand the concepts behind teamwork and collaboration as related to the medical profession and to strive for effective interactions.
  • Demonstrate a commitment to the utilization of other healthcare professionals in maximizing patient care.
  • Demonstrate respect for all members of the healthcare team and their contribution to patient care.
  • To understand the concept behind altruism as related to the medical profession and to strive for this attribute in your practice.
  • To understand the concept behind patient advocacy as related to the medical profession and promote this whenever appropriate.
  • View the patient as the center of the healthcare delivery system.
  • Attend to and support patient’s interests and needs as appropriate.
  • Actively involve patients in their health care when appropriate.

Core Experiences:

  • The students will be expected to display attitudes and behaviors appropriate for a student-physician under the direct instruction and supervision of the clerkship director and their attending, resident and intern physicians in the care of patients in the ambulatory, inpatient and Emergency Department setting as well as within the educational and structural components of the Internal Medicine clerkship.
  • The student will write a ½–1 page reflection paper on professionalism.
  • The paper can reflect on any aspect of professional or unprofessional attitudes and behaviors experienced or observed during the clerkship. This paper should have no personal identifiers.

Bioethics and End-of-Life Care

Goal:

To demonstrate attitudes and behaviors and to therefore practice in a manner that embodies autonomy, beneficence and nonmaleficence. To practice in a fiduciary manner. To become skilled at dealing with end-of-life issues in an appropriate, effective and compassionate manner and appreciate the impact they have on patients and families.

Objectives:

  • To become familiar with the basic ethical principles of autonomy, nonmaleficence, beneficence, truth-telling and confidentiality.
  • To recognize the importance of patient preferences, perspectives and perceptions and how these affect patient care.
  • To be constant and committed to caring for patients regardless of their socio-economic and socio-cultural background, ability to pay, race, gender, sexual orientation, religion or beliefs and medical diagnosis.
  • To become familiar with the ethical and legal issues regarding end-of-life care.
  • To understand and recognize when withholding or withdrawing care is appropriate and to understand the patient’s right to refuse care and exceptions to that right.
  • To participate in discussions in regard to advance directives and to become familiar with the process of documenting advance directives.
  • To recognize the importance of allowing terminally ill patients to die with dignity and comfort when it is the patient’s and/or families wishes.
  • Understand the ethical and legal issues in regard to health care proxies.
  • To understand the principles behind informed consent and become familiar with the process of obtaining informed consent.
  • Become familiar with palliative and hospice care.
  • Become familiar with symptoms and their control at the end-of-life.
  • Become familiar with the techniques and issues involved in breaking bad news.

Core Experiences:

  • The student will be active student learner directly involved in patient care under the direct instruction of an attending, resident and intern physician in the care of inpatients on an academic healthcare team for seven to eight weeks.
  • The student will be active student learner directly involved in patient care under the direct instruction of an attending in the care of outpatients in a variety of ambulatory settings for two weeks.
  • The student will be active student learner directly involved in patient care under the direct instruction of an attending and resident physician in the care of Emergency room patients for one week.
  • The student will be active student learner directly involved in patient care under the direct instruction of an attending, fellow, and resident physician in the care of ICU patients for one week.
  • The student will attend a two day special didactic session called Education for Physicians on End-of-Life Care (EPEC).