The 4 Pillars Of Ethics

With exams over, now it’s time to focus on the UKCAT and personal statement. Shortly followed by that, thinking about the interview. A key piece of knowledge for the interview is the 4 pillars of ethics, which is what I’ll be explaining today.






‘Freedom from external control or influence; independence’

Autonomy basically means that the patient has full control over the treatment they receive. As long as they’re conscious and mentally able to make a decision, the Doctor cannot impose a treatment on the patient.


‘(Of a person) generous or doing good.’

Beneficence is when Doctor, has a duty to promote the best course of action for the patient. It must be considered whether the that treatment is compatible with the patient’s individual circumstances, does the treatment meet the patient’s expectations, and if the treatment resolves the patients medical condition.

Non- Maleficence

‘A principle of bioethics that asserts an obligation not to inflict harm intentionally.’

In order to be non maleficence, the medical professional must put no harm on the patient. Things to consider are the patient’s dignity and respect, risk factors to the patient, do you as a medical professional have the skills to perform the procedure in question.


‘The quality of being fair and reasonable.’

Is the medical procedure in question legal, also that no one is unfairly disadvantaged when it comes to access to healthcare. An important factor to think about is whether something affects another person’s human right, and whether it favors one group of people over another.

Thank you.





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