Karachi Bioethics Group Meetings 2015

Host of the Year 2015 - Patel Hospital

Patel Hospital hosted the KBG meetings for the year 2015. Coordinators for the year were Dr. Nida Wahid and Dr. Abeer Salim Habib. Six meetings were held during the year, one every alternate month, with participation from KBG members and other attendees from various healthcare institutes. Topics with ethical concerns were presented in the form of a PowerPoint presentation for the audience in each meeting. Topics included:

1. Medical Error Reporting System, an initiative by Patel Hospital

Patel Hospital has developed a policy for reporting and analysis of medical errors. The presentation was about the objectives and initial outcomes of this initiative. The forum asked questions on how the medical error analysis committee analyses the cases. Maintaining the anonymity of the reporting person was appreciated as a strength of this reporting system.

2. My tests, my images- Who owns them?

As communication means have advanced, the medical world has also been affected. Doctors now have the convenience of sending clinical and radiographic images using smartphone applications like WhatsApp; but how can they maintain patient confidentiality and who has the ownership of such images? The young doctors were very concerned and interested to know how they could benefit from this technical comfort while practicing ethically.

3. Ethics of advertising in healthcare

Some local ads pertaining to healthcare were shared which resulted in an intense debate on how can professionals advertise their services without being labeled as unethical. The need to be visible as a healthcare service provider in this competitive environment was also debated upon.

4. Patient or cell phone- your priority?

Healthcare personnel has also been affected by the recent trend shift of everyone being occupied by their Smartphone. This is often for the benefit of the patient e.g. looking at the latest patient labs or radiographic images on it, but how justified is the use of the phone for other communications while providing care?

5. Confidentiality: Is it valid?

Some real case scenarios were presented on how a patient’s confidentiality gets compromised by healthcare providers who do not have the intention to do so. There was confusion among the participants between privacy and confidentiality as the two often overlap. The concepts have clarified the use of examples.

6. I have a right to copy!

Some real case scenarios encountered by young doctors as well as senior faculty were shared to create awareness about plagiarism and scientific misconduct. The topic generated interest among young doctors and post-graduate trainees who had many questions on how to avoid such phenomena while doing research. Each presentation was supported by local and international guidelines pertaining to each topic. Some highlights of the year:

  • Launch of:
  • The KBG official Facebook page
  • The KBG booklet “Understanding Medical Error” at Patel Hospital. (Attended by more than 100 guests).
  • Presentation of Patel Hospital’s initiative on the Medical error reporting system

The hospital is pleased to have hosted the KBG meetings and hopes to do it again in the future. It proved to be a learning opportunity for the hospital personnel.

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