Forensic Ethics and the Expert Witness
Springer Science & Business Media, Aug 19, 2007 - Psychology - 211 pages
Why a book about the ethics of forensic psychiatry and related disciplines? Most psychiatrists, after all, learn something in their training about the ethics of medical practice in general and of the practice of psychiatry in particular. Do the maxims that steer all physicians through the ethical complexities of clinical medicine not provide equally effective guidance to clinical and scientific expert witnesses? The answer, in short, is “No. ” When psychiatrists, for example, enter the realm of the expert witness, they tread on moral terrain with a significantly different topography than the paths to which they are accustomed in their clinical roles. Clinical psych- trists owe primary allegiance to their patients’interests; for them the prin- ples of beneficence (doing good) and non-maleficence (avoiding harm) will generally take priority over all other considerations. For psychiatrists who serve as experts, however, there are no patients to whom fidelity is due. There are only persons being evaluated for the sake of providing opinions to third parties. Perhaps a defendant in a criminal case, a plaintiff in a tort action, or a claimant in an adjudication of disability benefits or workers’ compensation—but not a patient. And that makes all the difference. Whatever its other virtues, no theory of the ethics of forensic psychiatry will serve its purpose unless it offers the psychiatric expert direction in dealing with this situation.
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Cases and Examples Using the Approaches So Far
Ethical Theories Principled Models Narrative Theory and Professional Integrity
Theories and Perspectives from Other Quarters
Robust Professionalism Beyond Roles
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AAPL Academy of Psychiatry American Academy American Psychiatric Association Appelbaum approach argue argument assessment attorney behavior bioethics Candilis Canon capital punishment client clinical clinicians competence confidentiality conflicts consultation context court courtroom experts cultural death penalty death row decision defendant defined Diamond duties ethical guidelines Ethics Committee example execution expertise forensic ethics forensic evaluation forensic experts forensic practice forensic professionals forensic psychiatry forensic psychologists forensic role Forensic Sciences Forensic Social Freedman and Halpern Gutheil harm healthcare honesty individual insanity defense issue justice legal proceeding legal system medical ethics medicine mental Nancy Cruzan non-maleficence obligations one’s opinion participation patient perspectives physicians Pollack prisoner’s problem profes profession professional ethics professional role psychia psychiatrists questions recognize relationship relevant requires responsibility Rodriquez role morality Rosner Sanson Social Work Practitioner society specific standards striving for objectivity testify testimony therapeutic tion treatment truth unethical values Weinstock World Psychiatric Association