Janet Fleetwood, PhD; Stephanie S. Unger, JD
Institutional ethics committees have been hailed as a good resource for physicians confronting complex ethical issues in patient care.Physicians may seek ethics committee consultations to receive impartial assistance in decision making, to resolve conflicts, and to avoid cumbersome court procedures and unwieldy litigation. The endorsement of ethics committees by the President's Commission, the American Hospital Association, the American Medical Association, and the Department of Health and Human Services, along with recent state legislation governing committees in Maryland, New Jersey, and Hawaii, raises questions about the proper scope and authority of ethics committees. We examined the accountability of institutional ethics committees and argue against immunity-conferring statutes that shield physicians who follow a committee's advice from civil and criminal liability.
Learn more about subscription options.
Register Now for a free account.
Fleetwood J, Unger SS. Institutional Ethics Committees and the Shield of Immunity. Ann Intern Med. 1994;120:320–325. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-120-4-199402150-00010
Download citation file:
Published: Ann Intern Med. 1994;120(4):320-325.
Results provided by:
Copyright © 2017 American College of Physicians. All Rights Reserved.
Print ISSN: 0003-4819 | Online ISSN: 1539-3704
Conditions of Use
This PDF is available to Subscribers Only