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applied ethics

the practical application of moral standards that concern benefiting the patient


a field resulting from modern medical advances and research


the branch of philosophy related to morals, moral principles, and moral judgments

medical practice acts

apply specifically to the way medicine is practiced in a particular state

principle of autonomy

people have the right to make decisions about their own life


an ethical theory based on the greatest good for the greatest number

administrative law

branch of public law covers regulations that are set by government agencies


neglect, of a legally binding agreement between two parties

case law

made by judges when they apply previous court decisions to current cases

checks and balances

designed so that no one branch could have more power than the another branch

legislative branch

congress, the law making body

judicial branch

judges and the federal courts, interprets the laws

executive branch

president and their cabinet, administers and enforces the law

civil law

concerns relationships either between individuals or between individuals and the government


part of the agreement

contract law

enforcable promises and agreements between two or more persons to do, or not do, a particular action

criminal law

made to protect the public as a whole from the harmful acts of others


person being sued


legal process by which facts are discovered before a trial begins

implied contract

agreement is shown through inference by signs, inaction, and silence


the person sueing


civil injury, or wrongful act, commited against another person or property resulting in harm, and is compensated by money damages


written command to appear in court

subpoena duces tecum

"under penalty, take with you." court order requiring a witness to appear in court and to bring certain records to a trial or deposition


rules or laws made by agencies


laws passed by legislative bodies either congress or a state legislative


an unintentional action


physician and patient relationship

dereliction of duty

physician failed to provide correct standard of care

standard of care

ordinary skill and care that medical practitioners such as physicians, nurses, ect, must use as determined by their state license or certification

prudent person rule

healthcare profesional must provide information to a patient that a reasonable, prudent person would want before he or she makes a decision about treatment or refusal of treatment

good samaritan act

laws that help protect from liability healthcare professionals and ordinary citizens who provide emergency care to an accident victim

guardian ad litem

adult to act in the court on behalf of a child in litigation

statute of limitations

period of time that a patient has to file a lawsuit

respondeat superior

"let the master answer." employer is liable for acts of employee within the scope of employment


submitting a dispute to a person other than a judge, is becoming a popular means for resolving a civil dispute

assumption of risk

the legal defense that prevents a plaintiff from recovering damages if the plaintiff voluntarily accepts a risk associated with the activity


failure to meet professional standards of care that result in harm to another person


involves using the opinion of a neutral third person for nonbonding decisions

advanced directive

written statements in which people state the type and amount of care they wish to recieve during a terminal illness and as death approaches. includes the living will, durable power of attorney, uniform anatomical gift act, and DNR

living will

allows a patient to set forth their intentions in advance to their treatment and care

uniform anatomical gift act

allows a person 18 and older and of sound mind to make a gift of any orall body parts for the purpose of organ transplantation or medical research

durable power of attorney

when signed by the patient allows an agent or representitive designated by the patient to act on behalf of the patient

agent or proxy

representitive designated by the patient to act on behalf of the patient


"do not resuscitate." means CPR cannot be used if the persons heart and breathing stops


if physicians do not give formal notice of withdrawl from the case

implied consent

when patients indicate by their behaviors that they are accepting of the procedure

informed consent

means that the patient agrees to the proposed course of treatment after having been told about the possible consequences of having or not having certain procedures and treatments

chain of evidence or custody of evidence

to verify that the specimen has been handled correctly

three step ethics model

is it legal, is it balanced, how does it make me feel

common law

may explain or interpret the other sources of law

expert witness

person called as a witness in a case where the subject matter is beyond the general knowledge of most people in the court or on the jury

patients obligations

pay the bill, notify the physician of past medical history, follow physicians instructions

corrections to medical records

draw a single line though the error, writing the correction above the error, dating the change, and then initialing it

procedures if subpoena recieved

notify the physician, notify the patient or patients attorney, copy and produce only information that was requested

minimum necessary standard

provider must make a reasonable effort to limit the disclosure of patient information to only the minimum that is necessary to accomplish the purpose of the request

protected health information

refers to any individually identifiable informatioin that relates to all past, present, and future physical or mental conditions or the provision of healthcare to an individual

medical providers obligations under HIPAA

improve the portability of health insurance. combat fraud, abuse, and waste in healthcare. promote the expanded use of medical savings acount. simplify the administration of health insurance

rights based ethics

based on the premise that there are moral entitlements by virtue of being human (i.e., the right to healthcare, the right to free speech).

duty based ethics

based on absolute moral rules. this theory is based on the premises that universal principles should guide all actions. these absolute rules or principles will help us to determine what constitutes our duty toward others.

exceptions to consent

a physician need not inform a patient about risks that are commonly known. a physician who believes the disclosure of risks may be detrimental to the patient is not required to disclose them. if the patient asks the physician not to disclose the risks, then the physician is not required to do so. a physician is not required to restore patients to their original state of health. a physician may not be able to elicit a cure for every patient. a physician cannot gurantee the successful results of every treatment

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