Matthew DeCamp, MD, PhD; Lisa Soleymani Lehmann, MD, PhD; Pooja Jaeel, MD; Carrie Horwitch, MD, MPH (*); for the ACP Ethics, Professionalism and Human Rights Committee
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this manuscript do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Center for Ethics in Health Care, the Department of Veterans Affairs, or Harvard University.
Acknowledgment: The authors and the EPHRC thank peer reviewers Michele Barry, MD, John A. Crump, MBChB, MD, Marion Danis, MD, Ana S. Iltis, PhD, Tracy L. Rabin, MD, MS, and the many leadership and journal reviewers of the paper for helpful comments on drafts; Sean Lena for research assistance; and Lois Snyder Sulmasy, JD, and Kathy Wynkoop of the ACP Center for Ethics and Professionalism.
Financial Support: Financial support for the development of this paper comes exclusively from the ACP operating budget.
Disclosures: Disclosures can be viewed at www.acponline.org/authors/icmje/ConflictOfInterestForms.do?msNum=M17-3361.
Requests for Single Reprints: Lois Snyder Sulmasy, JD, American College of Physicians, Center for Ethics and Professionalism, 190 N. Independence Mall West, Philadelphia, PA 19106; e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Current Author Addresses: Dr. DeCamp: Johns Hopkins University, Berman Institute of Bioethics, 1809 Ashland Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21205.
Dr. Lehmann: National Center for Ethics in Health Care, Veterans Health Administration, 810 Vermont Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20420.
Dr. Jaeel: Internal Medicine Residency Training Program, University of California–San Diego School of Medicine, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093.
Dr. Horwitch: Virginia Mason Medical Center, 1100 9th Avenue, Seattle, WA 98101.
Author Contributions: Conception and design: M. DeCamp, L.S. Lehmann, P. Jaeel, C. Horwitch.
Analysis and interpretation of the data: M. DeCamp, L.S. Lehmann, P. Jaeel.
Drafting of the article: M. DeCamp, L.S. Lehmann, P. Jaeel, C. Horwitch.
Critical revision of the article for important intellectual content: M. DeCamp, L.S. Lehmann, C. Horwitch.
Final approval of the article: M. DeCamp, L.S. Lehmann, P. Jaeel, C. Horwitch.
Collection and assembly of data: M. DeCamp, L.S. Lehmann.
This American College of Physicians position paper aims to inform ethical decision making surrounding participation in short-term global health clinical care experiences. Although the positions are primarily intended for practicing physicians, they may apply to other health care professionals and should inform how institutions, organizations, and others structure short-term global health experiences. The primary goal of short-term global health clinical care experiences is to improve the health and well-being of the individuals and communities where they occur. In addition, potential benefits for participants in global health include increased awareness of global health issues, new medical knowledge, enhanced physical diagnosis skills when practicing in low-technology settings, improved language skills, enhanced cultural sensitivity, a greater capacity for clinical problem solving, and an improved sense of self-satisfaction or professional satisfaction. However, these activities involve several ethical challenges. Addressing these challenges is critical to protecting patient welfare in all geographic locales, promoting fair and equitable care globally, and maintaining trust in the profession. This paper describes 5 core positions that focus on ethics and the clinical care context and provides case scenarios to illustrate them.
Table. Case Scenarios
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DeCamp M, Lehmann LS, Jaeel P, Horwitch C, for the ACP Ethics, Professionalism and Human Rights Committee. Ethical Obligations Regarding Short-Term Global Health Clinical Experiences: An American College of Physicians Position Paper. Ann Intern Med. [Epub ahead of print 27 March 2018]:. doi: 10.7326/M17-3361
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 2018.
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