oa Current Allergy & Clinical Immunology - The 'difficult' patient - may I refuse to treat him? : ethics

Volume 26, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1609-3607



Doctors have both legal and ethical responsibilities towards their patients. Is it ever acceptable to refuse to treat a patient? In fact, it is, although the healthcare practitioner has to beware of abandonment of the patient. Some of the reasons for refusal to treat that are discussed in this article include risk to the doctor, non-compliance on the part of the patient, conscientious objection to the required treatment, or if the patient is hostile or abusive to the doctor and/or treating team.

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