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Medical ethics written into draft of code of conduct for China's medical workers

(Xinhua)

15:04, December 27, 2011

BEIJING, Dec. 27 (Xinhua) -- Medical ethics and doctor-patient relationship guidelines have been written into an expository draft of conduct standards meant to systematize medical practitioners' performances, China's Ministry of Health (MOH) said.

The draft, including 10 chapters with 53 clauses, was posted on the MOH website on Monday to solicit responses and views from society as well as professionals in the medical industry.

According to the draft, practitioners in all types of medical institutions should follow the proposed standards, such as respecting patients, observing medical ethics, enhancing communication with patients and not illegally accepting money or gifts offered by patients.

Meanwhile, medical workers' performances will be evaluated in accordance with the conduct standards and those who break the rules will be punished.

Authorities from the MOH said the conduct standards are of great importance as some of the current laws only mention prohibited actions without providing positive educational guidance or covering medical problems that have arisen recently.

Medical incidents erupted several times this year. In an extreme case in September, a 43-year-old surgeon in Beijing Tongren Hospital was stabbed by a patient, causing serious injury. The attack was believed to have been triggered by a medical dispute.

According to the MOH, a total of 14,976 cases of medical disputes were handled by the country's emerging third-party mediation organizations, and over 80 percent of these cases have been settled.

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