Module 1: Professional Accountability and Prescribing

Lesson 6

Respecting patient autonomy

Respecting patient autonomy is the basis of the patient-provider relationship and must be addressed in all clinical situations. Respecting the autonomy of the patient mandates that the clinician provides the information needed to improve health based on the patient’s values and preferences. Personal feelings about the patient need to be separated from professional responsibilities. At all times, clinicians are required by their code of ethics to provide medically correct information and facilitate patients’ access to care if the provider cannot provide the care given their own personal moral values.