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Courage and Compassion: Virtues in Caring for So-Called “Difficult” Patients

External Link - Source: Journal Of Medical Ethics

n his 1978 article, “Taking Care of the Hateful Patient,” James E. Groves wrote about “those [patients] whom most physicians dread”—patients who, as others have noted, seem to display “behavioral or emotional aspects” such as “psychiatric disorders, personality disorders, and subclinical behavior traits” that, while not necessarily related to their primary medical condition, nonetheless complicate their care. What, if anything, can medical ethics offer to assist in the care of such patients?

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