Ethical and bioethical aspects concerning the disclosure of medical information for a fair reason


Revista da Associação Médica Brasileira




SUMMARY OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to emphasize the importance of legal and bioethical knowledge in maintaining medical confidentiality, especially in situations when there is a diagnosis of HIV infection. METHODS: A literature review of studies published in the Scientific Electronic Library Online and National Library of Medicine databases was performed. Sixteen studies available in full, online, and free, published between 2010 and 2020, were selected. RESULTS: The studies highlighted that, despite the ethical duty to breach confidentiality for the protection of third parties, many doctors are reluctant to reveal this secret due to the power of stigmatization and social discrimination related to the diagnosis of HIV infection, which affects integrity, counseling, and capability to treat patients. CONCLUSION: HIV diagnosis implies bioethical and legal questions. Respect for medical confidentiality is a matter to be discussed, as there is a need to protect the privacy of the patient, at the same time the responsibility to preserve the health of others.

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