Breaking Patient Confidentiality: Comparing Chilean and French Viewpoints Regarding the Conditions of its Acceptability

Abstract : To examine the conditions under which lay people and health professionals living in Chile and France find it acceptable for a physician to break confidentiality to protect the spouse of a patient with a sexually transmitted disease (STD), 207 lay persons and healthcare professionals indicated the acceptability of breaking confidentiality in 48 scenarios combining five factors: disease severity, time taken to discuss this with the patient, patient's intent to inform his spouse about the disease, patient's intent to adopt protective behaviors, and physician's decision to consult an STD expert. A cluster analysis revealed groups that found breaking confidentiality "always acceptable", requiring "consultation with an expert", "depending on the many circumstances", and "never acceptable" (11%)". Despite differences in legislation and ethics codes, Chilean and French lay people showed similar personal convictions regarding the circumstances in which breaking patient confidentiality is acceptable. In contrast, Chilean physicians were much less supportive than French physicians of complete respect of patient confidentiality in all cases.
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Cecilia Olivari, María Teresa Muñoz Sastre, Myriam Guedj, P.C. Sorum, Etienne Mullet. Breaking Patient Confidentiality: Comparing Chilean and French Viewpoints Regarding the Conditions of its Acceptability. Universitas Psychologica, Pontifica Universidad Javeriana, Faculty of Science, 2010, 10 (1), pp.13-26. ⟨hal-01953045⟩

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