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date: 26 June 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Consultation-liaison Psychiatry is the newest sub-specialty in psychiatry. It focuses on the psychological/psychiatric care of medical, surgical, obstetrical, and gynecological patients and presents many distinctive ethical dilemmas. These dilemmas often involve judgments of capacity and justified paternalism, manifest versus latent content, surrogate decision making, confidentiality, truth telling, dual agency, refusing treatment, decisions to end life, surrogate decision-making, and the complexity of interdisciplinary moral relationships. This interface between psychiatry, medicine, and ethics highlights the need for bioethical teaching within medical school, residency, and fellowship education. Ethical reasoning needs to be in the repertoire of the contemporary physician especially now, given the rapidly expanding choices that must be made in today’s medicine. This chapter provides examples of ethical dilemmas that arise in Consultation/Liaison Psychiatry and illustrations of the ethical analysis that can be used to resolve them.

Keywords: ethics, psychology, ethical dilemmas, psychiatry, medical care, consultation psychiatry, liaison psychiatry

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