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Contemporary Challenges to Conscience

Legal and Ethical Frameworks for Professional Conduct

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Edited By Aleksander Stępkowski

This book is a collection of studies addressing the complex and sensitive issue of conscientious objection. It has become utmost controversial, especially in relation to professional conduct in healthcare service. Moral dilemmas of physicians, being always a part of human existence, due to the development of public health insurance, became also a political issue with legal consequences. The book provides an in-depth analysis of this complex issue from a multidisciplinary perspective, including philosophical, political, legal and medical aspects. It also presents various experiences of different medical and legal professionals in this field.

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Judgement K12/14 of 7th October 2015

Extract



File No. K 12/14*

On behalf of the Republic of Poland

The Constitutional Tribunal (…) after examination, with the participation of the applicant and of the Marshal of the Sejm and the Public Prosecutor General, at the hearing held on 7 October 2015, the application by the Supreme Medical Council (pl. Naczelna Rada Lekarska - NRL) (…) decides:

1. Article 39, first sentence, in connection with Article 30 of the Act of 5 December 1996 on Professions of Doctor and Dentist (Journal of Laws of 2015 item 464) in so far as it imposes on the doctor the obligation to perform incompatibly with his conscience medical services “in other urgent cases”, is inconsistent with the principle of correct legislation based on Article 2 of the Constitution of the Republic of Poland and Article 53 para. 1 in connection with Article 31 para. 3 of the Constitution.

2. Article 39, first sentence, of the Act referred to in the Point 1., in so far as it imposes on the doctor, who refrains from the performance of a medical service incompatible with his conscience, the obligation to indicate a real possibility of obtaining that service from another doctor or entity, is incompatible with Article 53 para. 1 in connection with Article 31 para. 3 of the Constitution.

3. Article 39, second sentence, of the Act referred to in the Point 1., in so far as it obliges the doctor practicing on the...

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