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Books, Journals, New Media
April 8, 1998

Medical Ethics: The Doctor's Dilemma: Essentials of Medical Ethics

Author Affiliations

Harriet S.MeyerMD, Contributing EditorJonathan D.EldredgeMLS, PhD, Journal Review EditorRobertHoganMD, adviser for softwareHarriet S.MeyerMD, Contributing EditorJonathan D.EldredgeMLS, PhD, Journal Review EditorRobertHoganMD, adviser for new media


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by Richard Martin, Andy C. Reese, Evelyn Weil Browne, and John Baros-Johnson, one CD-ROM, requirements: 8MB RAM; 80486 processor or better, Windows 3.1 or, later, 16-bit color, or Macintosh 68030 processor or better, System 7.0 or later, 16-bit color, $99, ISBN 1-885966-29-6, $249 CME version (15 category I credits), ISBN 1-885966-30-X, $475 institutional version, ISBN 1-885699-31-8, Tampa, Fla, Gold Standard Mutltimedia, 1997.

JAMA. 1998;279(14):1123-1124. doi:10.1001/jama.279.14.1123-JBK0408-5-1

The goal of The Doctor's Dilemma CD-ROM is to help the family practitioner become aware of the ethical dimensions of the practice of medicine. You, the reader, assume the role of a "Dr Newman" whose sex you choose at the outset. You then experience a typical day in Dr Newman's professional life.

You are given 10 cases with a brief description of the ethical issue in each. You then select the patient's file, which includes a brief summary of the clinical case and the inherent ethical dilemmas. The cases illustrate discontinuance of life support, artificial insemination of a lesbian in a stable relationship, a patient with the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome who won't let you inform his wife, informed consent in a clinical trial of a new drug, dealing with a difficult patient, potential abortion of a fetus with Down syndrome, a request for assistance in suicide, alternative cancer therapies in a 12-year-old boy, malpractice of a former mentor, and birth control for a teen who is the daughter of friends. You then engage in conversation with the patient or family and either come to closure or, failing that, confer with one of several consultants, including a medical ethicist, an attorney, a clinical psychologist, a hospital chaplain, and several colleagues. In the course of the discussion, the consultants will refer you to highlighted references, which you can click on for a reprint.