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Unread October 7th, 2009, 11:00 AM
moviedoc moviedoc is offline
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 5
Default Re: Abuse of curbside consultation

Anything is possible but I have reason to believe the doctor knew of my involvement already, and was fishing, or what was the doctor doing?

To me the question of what it's OK to talk about in the doctor's lounge is on a continuum of what we can talk about in a blog or even a print publication. Assuming there is NO mention of name or other unique identifier, should we be able to say, "I was asked to testify in a malpractice case." (Very general.) or "I was asked to opine as to whether a party to a divorce might be diagnosed with gambling addiction." (still pretty general). The more specific the info revealed the more likely someone can identify the case. And the more public the forum, the less specific we can be.

You also raise the question of "community." In this case the attorney practices in another city about 30 miles away. Perhaps we should always assume we're in one big community.

Another way to look at this is that the fact that my answer might have been inappropriate does not make the quesiton posed OK.

A bit of a tangent again, but we are told to either get consent from the pt or make sure the case cannot be indentified when we publish case descriptions. I don't believe it is ethical to ask for consent, because the pt. might not feel free to refuse, wanting to avoid offending the doc. (No reference to transfer is needed.) That leaves us wondering how general we need to make the case for it to be OK, or, what I prefer, to fictionalize the case and say so. Over a year ago several prominent NYC psychiatrists described several cases in what I would think would be identifiable detail in the NY Times. There was no indication the cases were made up, and the NY Times is known for verification of such information. Was that unethical?

Thanks Bill.
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