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January 4, 2006

Consent and HIV Testing in Critically Ill Patients

Author Affiliations

Letters Section Editor: Robert M. Golub, MD, Senior Editor.

JAMA. 2006;295(1):38. doi:10.1001/jama.295.1.38-a

To the Editor: In his Commentary on human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) testing without consent in critically ill patients, Dr Halpern1 reported on the current policies in the United States and presented arguments for and against nonconsented testing. No less important are the issues surrounding confidentiality after testing, not only when the patient becomes competent (as discussed in the article) but also and more frequently when the results of a positive nonconsented HIV test cannot be communicated due to persisting cognitive impairment.

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