Confidentiality in Health Care

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The importance of patient confidentiality in health care setting The purpose of this assignment is to explore the importance of patient confidentiality. This assignment will define and discuss the values of confidentiality in general and in mental health care setting. It will highlight its importance in individual decisions to seek health care services. Each profession that provides health care embraces confidentiality as a core principle therefore, the legal framework and ethical issues of governing confidentiality and exceptions where confidential information could be disclosed will be discussed as well. People have a right to privacy for medical information for the same reason as privacy for other personal information. Such information should not be used in a way that ultimately affects the individuals negatively as it could lead to personal and professional problems. Confidentiality is the principle of gathering identifiable patient information during the period of time while receiving medical care which provides individuals with legal and lawful right to know that the information revealed to health care professionals is retained as confidential and has limits on how and where it can be disclosed to other people (Van Dokkum 2005). Identifiable patient information includes information which can be used to detect and discover an individual’s identity (i.e. patients name, personal public service number, telephone number, date of birth, address, etc.) and any personal information which is associated with an individual such as medical history, education or employment history, habits, current marriage or partnership, next of kin’s contact details (Anderson and Goodman 2002). Identifiable patient information can be found in document form and/or stored on the computer. One of the key principles of confidentiality is that there is a responsibility to behave in certain way in order to achieve best outcomes of action based on medical professional’s ability...
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