Why is dementia different? Medical students' views about deceiving people with dementia

Tullo, Ellen StClair, Lee, Richard, Robinson, Louise and Allan, Louise (2015) Why is dementia different? Medical students' views about deceiving people with dementia. Aging & Mental Health, 19 (8). pp. 731-738. ISSN 1360-7863

Full text not available from this repository.
Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13607863.2014.967173


Objectives: Care of patients with dementia raises challenging ethical issues, including the use of deception in clinical practice. This study aimed to determine the extent to which medical students agree that ethical arguments for and against deceiving patients in general apply to patients with dementia.

Method: Qualitative study using six focus groups (n = 21) and 10 interviews (n = 10) with undergraduate students in years 1, 3 and 5 at a UK medical school. Analysis using initial coding followed by comparison of data with a pre-existing framework concerning deception in clinical practice.

Results: Arguments for and against deceiving patients with dementia overlapped with those previously described in relation to clinical practice in general. However, the majority of participants highlighted issues unique to dementia care that warranted additional consideration. Three key dementia-specific considerations identified were capacity (understanding, retaining and emotional processing), perceived vulnerability and family dynamics. Students expressed uncertainty as to their ability to make judgements about honest communication with patients with dementia and their families.

Conclusion: Dementia adds additional complexity to clinical judgements about the acceptability of deception in practice. Medical students have a number of unmet learning needs with regard to communicating with patients with dementia and their families. Existing ethical frameworks may provide a helpful starting point for education about dementia care.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: dementia and cognitive disorders, policy, ethics and law, qualitative methods
Subjects: B900 Others in Subjects allied to Medicine
C800 Psychology
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Social Work, Education and Community Wellbeing
Depositing User: Paul Burns
Date Deposited: 10 Jan 2019 18:15
Last Modified: 11 Oct 2019 14:46
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/37538

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