Navigation Links
Grateful patient philanthropy and the doctor-patient relationship

Physicians associated with "patient philanthropy" financial donations from grateful patients to a medical institution are concerned with how these contributions might affect their own behavior and attitudes, and how they might impact the doctor-patient relationship. A new study by Scott Wright, MD and Joseph A. Carrese, MD, MPH of Johns Hopkins University, and colleagues, explores this topic. The paper considers the perspectives of internal medicine physicians working in an academic medical center who have had experiences with these situations. Their findings appear in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, published by Springer.

The researchers conducted in-depth interviews with 20 physicians in the Department of Medicine at Johns Hopkins University. All of those interviewed had relationships with several patients who had made philanthropic contributions. They asked the doctors to describe their thoughts about ethical considerations that could be associated with grateful patient philanthropy. The analysis of the physicians' responses identified several ethical issues.

The number one ethical consideration was that many physicians felt as if their relationship with the patient had been transformed as a result of the philanthropic gift. Physicians were concerned that the purity of the physician-patient bond might be tainted or that patient expectations could change. The second most frequently-cited concern was the notion that physicians often feel unprepared, and even uncomfortable, in discussing financial support, even when the subject is broached by the patient.

Physicians also said that they may feel pressure to treat philanthropic patients differently than other patients as a way of demonstrating appreciation for the grateful patient's generosity. This was a noted source of discomfort for doctors. Several doctors also expressed concern about accepting gifts from sick patients, because although patients sincerely want to give, by virtue of their illness they may be in a vulnerable state.

Interestingly, despite the fact that these ethical concerns were raised, a majority of the physicians interviewed said that ultimately there were no ethical issues involved with the facilitation of grateful patient philanthropy since, at the end of the day, the decision to give lies with the patient.

The authors note that despite the ethical concerns reported in the paper, academic medical centers and their faculty are likely to increasingly pursue patient philanthropy. Accordingly, the authors conclude, "Institutions may wish to consider the issues described by our doctors to ensure that front line physicians are supported in these efforts, in ways that allow them to maintain their commitments to high ethical and professional standards."


Contact: Alexander K. Brown
Springer Science+Business Media

Related medicine news :

1. Grateful Teens May Have Less Risk for Depression, Other Problems
2. Patients health service use
3. Gaps in Care Found for Sickle Cell Disease Patients
4. Reduced intensity regimen prior to marrow transplant better for older leukemia patients
5. Novel therapeutic agents provide hope for patients with hard-to-treat blood disorders
6. More than a third of high-risk leukemia patients respond to an experimental new drug
7. Dr. Michael Reiss of Southern Nevada Chiropractic Helps Car Accident Patients with Neck or Back Pain by Providing Computerized Spinal Exam and a Copy of His Book
8. Studies challenge standards to improve treatment outcomes for patients with clotting disorders
9. Investigational agent targets gene signaling pathways to improve response for patients with CLL
10. Updated Clinical Results Show Experimental Agent Ibrutinib as Highly Active in CLL Patients
11. VABC Responds to Study on Use of Cholesterol Lowering Drug Statins on Cancer Patients
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... Using a combination of two blood ... children and adults, according to a new study by researchers at the School of ... Children and Adults: Using Combinations of Blood Glucose Tests ,” published in Frontiers in ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... Newly reviewed and approved “NJ Top ... from Tufts School of Dental Medicine in 1935. His father graduated from NYU ... being in dentistry as well as their commitment and passion to the Practice of ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... York, NY (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... York Times,” will be released on December 1, 2015, to coincide with World AIDS ... about the groundbreaking journalist who covered the AIDS epidemic as he was dying of ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... The American Society for ... honor of World AIDS Day 2015. On Nov. 30, ASCP shared its “Give a ... about World AIDS Day and the importance of getting tested for HIV. , ASCP ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... 30, 2015 , ... California-based i2i Systems, a pioneer defining ... Michigan-based Family Health Center (FHC) has selected i2iTracks as their population health management ... the largest Affordable Care Act grant for Federally Qualified Health Centers in the ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... , Nov. 30, 2015 Nautilus Medical ... Radiology Image Management platform ( ). The release ... announced from RSNA 2015 (Radiology Society North America) in ... conference in the U.S. --> ... platform that enables access to radiology studies worldwide via ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... North America was valued ... at a CAGR of 7.6% from 2015 to 2020. --> ... million in 2014, and is expected to grow at a CAGR ... the new Market Research Report "North America Cardiac Output Monitoring Devices ... ambulatory care, others) - Analysis And Forecast To 2020", the cardiac ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... 30, 2015 ... adds a 2015 publication on ... 2015 with comprehensive analysis of recent ... deal types, such as Mergers & ... . --> ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: