Document Detail

Does professional orientation predict ethical sensitivities? Attitudes of paediatric and obstetric specialists toward fetuses, pregnant women and pregnancy termination.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23572566     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
BACKGROUND: To determine (1) whether fetal care paediatric (FCP) and maternal-fetal medicine (MFM) specialists harbour differing attitudes about pregnancy termination for congenital fetal conditions, their perceived responsibilities to pregnant women and fetuses, and the fetus as a patient and (2) whether self-perceived primary responsibilities to fetuses and women and views about the fetus as a patient are associated with attitudes about clinical care. METHODS: Mail survey of 434 MFM and FCP specialists (response rates 60.9% and 54.2%, respectively). RESULTS: MFMs were more likely than FCPs to disagree with these statements (all p values<0.005): (1) 'the presence of a fetal abnormality is not an appropriate reason for a couple to consider pregnancy termination' (MFM : FCP-78.4% vs 63.5%); (2) 'the effects that a child born with disabilities might have on marital and family relationships is not an appropriate reason for a couple to consider pregnancy termination' (MFM : FCP-80.5% vs 70.2%); and (3) 'the cost of healthcare for the future child is not an appropriate reason for a couple to consider pregnancy termination' (MFM : FCP-73.5% vs 55.9%). 65% MFMs versus 47% FCPs disagreed that their professional responsibility is to focus primarily on fetal well-being (p<0.01). Specialists did not differ regarding the fetus as a separate patient. Responses about self-perceived responsibility to focus on fetal well-being were associated with clinical practice attitudes. CONCLUSIONS: Independent of demographic and sociopolitical characteristics, FCPs and MFMs possess divergent ethical sensitivities regarding pregnancy termination, pregnant women and fetuses, which may influence clinical care.
Stephen D Brown; Karen Donelan; Yolanda Martins; Sadath A Sayeed; Christine Mitchell; Terry L Buchmiller; Kelly Burmeister; Jeffrey L Ecker
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2013-4-9
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of medical ethics     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1473-4257     ISO Abbreviation:  J Med Ethics     Publication Date:  2013 Apr 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2013-4-10     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7513619     Medline TA:  J Med Ethics     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
Department of Radiology, Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.
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