Trust in medicine

Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 27 (1):11 – 29 (2002)

Authors
Chalmers Clark
Union College
Abstract
Trust relations in medicine are argued to be a requisite response to the special vulnerability of persons as patients. Even so, the problem of motivating trust remains a vital concern. On this score, it is argued that a strong motivation can be found in recognizing that professional self-interest actually entails cultivation of patient trust as a means to maintain professional self-governance. And while the initial move to restore trust must be provoked from such narrow concerns, the process of sustaining trust will require educational initiatives aimed at restoring attitudes and skills suggestive of Percival's concept of empathic care. By including such initiatives, future waves of medical professionals are apt to sustain trust with deepened commitments to character, care, and trust as constitutive properties of their professional mission.
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DOI 10.1076/jmep.27.1.11.2975
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