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Article
April 3, 1926

INDIVIDUAL VERSUS GROUP RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE CARE OF THE HOSPITAL PATIENT

JAMA. 1926;86(14):995-996. doi:10.1001/jama.1926.02670400005002
Abstract

Responsibility means the state of being responsible. Our dictionaries define being responsible as: (1) being answerable legally or morally for discharge of a duty, trust or debt; (2) being able to meet obligations, or (3) having a perception of the distinctions between right and wrong.

You may profitably discuss some of the myriad ways care of hospital patients demands responsibility. With your leave, I shall not. We all know they exist and that they have to be met by group or individual. Whether they can be best dealt with by the individual or by the group is our concern.

The precise meaning of our subject is susceptible of varied interpretation, according to the experiences of doctors in their several communities. My discussion must be confined to principles seemingly pertinent, gained in limited personal experience.

A hospital patient first encounters the admitting mechanism. In a sense, this is a group. If

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