Wednesday, December 20, 2006

House of Healing, House of Disrespect: A Kantian Perspective on Disrespectful Behaviour among Hospital Workers

Respect toward patients is one of the most fundamental and central tenets guiding both modern bioethical practice and the everyday behaviour of all healthcare professionals. However, similar courtesy and respect is often breached in day-to-day interactions between hospital workers. Many examples are relatively minor, while egregious examples such as gender discrimination and physical abuse do occur. The more egregious transgressions may be handled by formal processes, even legal proceedings. However, the innumerable smaller examples of disrespectful behaviour are ubiquitous and insidious in their erosion of a productive collaborative approach to patient care and other aspects of functioning within the institution.

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