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  • Print publication year: 2001
  • Online publication date: February 2015

Section 2 - Problems in truth-telling

Summary

Truth-telling is a major feature of physician– patient interactions. On the one hand, professionals must tell the truth so that patients can adequately make decisions about their health care. On the other, patients must have sufficient trust in the relationship to give accurate and forthright responses to their doctors. In this section some of the complexities of truth-telling are raised. Questions about the appropriateness of disclosing information only arise when there is some sort of psychological resistance to disclosing a particular kind of information. What are the limits of disclosure? Is misleading through dissembling and obfuscation justifiable?