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Journal of Medical Humanities

, Volume 37, Issue 4, pp 419–433 | Cite as

Can Doctors Maintain Good Character? An Examination of Physician Lives

  • Saba FatimaEmail author
Article

Abstract

Can doctors maintain good character? This paper shifts the focus from patient care to ethical considerations that bear on the physician and impact her as a person. By decentering patient care, the paper highlights certain factors that habituate a particular way of reasoning that is not conducive to inculcating good character. Such factors include, standards of professionalism, being influenced by external monitors, and emphasis on adherence to guidelines. While such factors may benefit patients, they often adversely affect the character of physicians.

Keywords

Character Physician Professionalism Virtue Empathy Compassion 

Notes

Acknowledgments

I would like to thank Alison Reiheld, PhD. and Erik Krag, PhD. for their constructive feedback on earlier drafts and the invaluable anonymous reviewers for their feedback on the latter versions. This paper also would not have been possible without the indispensable input from Huzaifa Quaizar, MD.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Philosophy DepartmentSouthern Illinois University EdwardsvilleEdwardsvilleUSA

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