n South African Medical Journal - From informed consent to shared decision-making : editorial




Morality in medicine was long dominated by paternalism: the belief that you could do almost anything to a patient as long as the principles of beneficence (best interests) and non-maleficence (no harm) were upheld. Kant and Mill reflected on autonomy and self-determination in philosophy, but it is only a century ago that the concept of informed consent, a strong expression of autonomy, was introduced into the law in the New York judgment quoted above.


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