Resuscitating Patient Rights during the Pandemic: COVID-19 and the Risk of Resurgent Paternalism

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3 Scopus citations

Abstract

The COVID-19 Pandemic a stress test for clinical medicine and medical ethics, with a confluence over questions of the proportionality of resuscitation. Drawing upon his experience as a clinical ethicist during the surge in New York City during the Spring of 2020, the author considers how attitudes regarding resuscitation have evolved since the inception of do-not-resuscitate (DNR) orders decades ago. Sharing a personal narrative about a DNR quandry he encountered as a medical intern, the author considers the balance of patient rights versus clinical discretion, warning about the risk of resurgent physician paternalism dressed up in the guise of a public health crisis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)215-221
Number of pages7
JournalCambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics
Volume30
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2021

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • DNR
  • history of medicine
  • medical ethics
  • paternalism
  • patient rights
  • resuscitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Issues, ethics and legal aspects
  • Health Policy

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