Ending Medical Self-Regulation: Does Less Physician Control Improve Patient Safety and Protect Patient Rights?

Thaddeus Mason Pope photo

Medicine has long been one of the most self-regulating of all professions. In the 1970s, the new field of bioethics was designed to challenge this prevailing system. As Senator Ted Kennedy explained at the founding of Georgetown’s Kennedy Institute of Ethics, “Human life is too precious and the decisions regarding it too important to leave to any one group of specialists.” Still, even fifty years later, medicine remains largely self-regulating. And patients have suffered. In this presentation, Professor Pope discusses recent initiatives to constrain the scope of physician discretion and how these initiatives improve patient safety and protect patient rights. He will place particular emphasis on the growing transition from traditional informed consent to shared decision-making with patient decision aids.
Thaddeus Mason Pope, JD, PhD
Director of the Health Law Institute
Mitchell Hamline School of Law
Recorded October 10, 2018

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Note: audio cuts out for one minute around 4:45.

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