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March 15, 1958


Author Affiliations

Greenwood, Miss.

President, Mississippi State Medical Association.

JAMA. 1958;166(11):1309-1312. doi:10.1001/jama.1958.02990110045008

The young physician must be no less proficient in the humanities than he is in the sciences if he is to succeed in bringing his career into a rich perspective of character and competence. The doctor must also be a citizen, and must seek the ideal balance in community and professional living. The dignity and confidence enjoyed by the profession should be upheld, and methods of healing should be founded on a scientific basis. Evolution in systems of medical ethics is virtually limited to manners of statement and application. Most questions of ethics are answered simply by requiring that the physician's action be in the best interest of the patient, but the honored ideals of the medical profession imply that the responsibilities of the physician extend not only to the individual but also to society.