Bioethics Discussion Blog: AMA on Torture

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Wednesday, November 09, 2005

AMA on Torture

Here is the current American Medical Association ethics statement on torture.

E-2.067 Torture

Torture refers to the deliberate, systematic, or wanton administration of cruel, inhumane, and degrading treatments or punishments during imprisonment or detainment.
Physicians must oppose and must not participate in torture for any reason. Participation in torture includes, but is not limited to, providing or withholding any services, substances, or knowledge to facilitate the practice of torture. Physicians must not be present when torture is used or threatened.
Physicians may treat prisoners or detainees if doing so is in their best interest, but physicians should not treat individuals to verify their health so that torture can begin or continue. Physicians who treat torture victims should not be persecuted. Physicians should help provide support for victims of torture and, whenever possible, strive to change situations in which torture is practiced or the potential for torture is great. (I, III)
Issued December 1999.


This statement applies to all physicians including, I would hope, applying to physicians who are within the U.S. Armed forces and the C.I.A. ..Maurice.

2 Comments:

At Wednesday, November 09, 2005 11:55:00 AM, Anonymous Allen Searls said...

I would hope it would apply to armed forces as well. But given the separate legal entity/system and so forth I wonder if anyone out there in the legal system could give us a definitive answer on whether it does. The prison scandal comes to mind as a legal point of reference...

 
At Thursday, November 10, 2005 9:29:00 AM, Blogger Maurice Bernstein, M.D. said...

Allen, please see my posting today 11-10-05 AMA on Torture (2):Potential Conflict Between Ethics and Law . That should begin to answer our concerns. ..Maurice.

 

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