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The University of Southampton
Clinical Ethics and Law at Southampton

Consent and confidentiality in family medicine: reflections on the “ABC” case Event

Anneke Lucassen
14:30 - 16:00
15 July 2020
Video conference through Bluejeans

For more information regarding this event, please email .

Event details

Prof Anneke Lucassen will be presenting at Wellcome Centre, Ethics & Humanities. This WEH/Ethox seminar will be held by video conference through Bluejeans. Please email to register. A link to the meeting will then be sent to you on the day of the seminar

Genetic and genomic tests are increasingly used in every day medical practice to clarify or predict clinical diagnoses. Where results indicate possible familial inheritances it can be difficult for practitioners to know how they balance their duty of confidentiality to one person with a duty to alerting others –who do not yet know about a familial risk- of preventative actions they might take.  The recent ABC versus St Georges and others (EWHC 455 (QB)2020) case considered such a scenario: Were the clinicians looking after a man with the genetic condition Huntington’s disease negligent for not alerting his daughter to this fact, when the man himself did not give consent for this?

In this talk Anneke will consider how the ruling in the case might affect future clinical practice, and consider ways in which family medicine already facilitates appropriate communication without a breach of confidence. She will also reflect on potential tensions between confidentiality and harm to others in other areas of medicine, using contact tracing in the current pandemic as an example. 

Speaker information

Prof Anneke Lucassen,Professor of Clinical Genetics

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