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August 10, 2005

Confidentiality and “Jambo, Jahi”

Author Affiliations
JAMA. 2005;294(6):680. doi:10.1001/jama.294.6.680-a

To the Editor: In reading A Piece of My Mind by Dr Dunavan,1 it appears that very personal medical information has been revealed about the individual who was the subject of the essay. Given the individual’s presumed developmental delay, it also appears that this information came from the hotel owner who was his employer rather than directly from the individual. While ambiguous, there is the suggestion that the employer may have questioned this individual in response to the author’s query, an action that could have been perceived by this person as coercive. I am concerned about the ethical appropriateness of publishing this very specific identifiable information.