What Is the Modern Version of the Hippocratic Oath?


Quick Answer

The modern Hippocratic Oath covers various ethical standards new physicians swear to uphold including a promise to respect patient privacy and to show their patients warmth and respect. The oath also requires physicians to swear to avoid overtreatment and to promote disease prevention. In 1964, Louis Lasagna, academic dean of the Tufts University School of Medicine, wrote a modern version of the Hippocratic Oath that many medical schools use.

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Full Answer

The Hippocratic Oath includes other ethical standards that physicians must promise to abide by. These include a willingness to acknowledge when they do not know the answer and to seek out the advice of another doctor.

Physicians usually take this oath upon graduation from medical school or receipt of their medical license. However, not all medical school use the Hippocratic Oath. Some use the Oath of Maimonides while others use the Declaration of Geneva, a 1948 revision of the Hippocratic Oath by the World Medical Association. Osteopathic medical schools have students take an Osteopathic Oath.

Hippocrates or one of his students wrote the original oath between the fifth and third century B.C. The oath has undergone several revisions during the 20th century in an attempt to adapt the oath to the ethical challenges faced by doctors in the modern world.

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