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Physicians Oath

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Article Updated: Sep 28, 2009

The Physician's Oath

The administration of Physician's Oath has become a tradition in medical world and it reminds all the physicians of the ethical behavior each one is subject to in the midst of the multitude of scientific activities of the medical profession. The Oath is thought to have originated in the fourth century BC and has come down to us in several translations. The present version or the Geneva Version of the World Medical Association was adopted by the General Assembly of the World Medical Association, Geneva , Switzerland , in September 1948 and amended by the 22nd World Medical Assembly, Sydney , Australia , in August 1968.

This oath seems to be a response to the atrocities committed by the physicians in Nazi Germany. This oath requires the physician to " not use [his] medical knowledge contrary to the laws of humanity."

At the time of being admitted as a member of the medical profession:

  • I solemnly pledge myself to consecrate my life to the service of humanity;
  • I will give to my teachers the respect and gratitude which is their due;
  • I will practise my profession with conscience and dignity; the health of my patient will be my first consideration;
  • I will maintain by all the means in my power, the honour and the noble traditions of the medical profession; my colleagues will be my brothers;
  • I will not permit considerations of religion, nationality, race, party politics or social standing to intervene between my duty and my patient;
  • I will maintain the utmost respect for human life from the time of conception, even under threat, I will not use my medical knowledge contrary to the laws of humanity;

I make these promises solemnly, freely and upon my honour.

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