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Confidentiality and Mental Health
  1. R D Hinshelwood
  1. Centre for Psychoanalytic Studies, University of Essex, Colchester CO4 3SQ

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    Edited by C Cordess. Jessica Kingsley Publications, 2001, £15.95 (pb), £47.50 (hb), pp 201. ISBN 1853028592

    The respect for confidentiality and the rhetoric about openness of information are in conflict in contemporary society, and the tone of the conflict is increasingly inflamed. The senior professions are the battleground. Medical ethics is in turmoil from this social trend, as well as from the high profile technical developments in genetics, transplant surgery, and reproductive technology. But in addition mental health has always had its inherent problems over ethical practice since it has, to this day, inevitably retained some element of medical paternalism. This places practitioners in a position in which they have a responsibility for the care of their patient, but also a responsibility for the protection of society. The particular problems in mental health often have deep moral implications, that do not exist in general medicine.

    Chris Cordess …

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