The future of medical professionalism

John R Williams


Medical professionalism is under threat today and its future is quite uncertain. In order to influence the future rather than let it be determined by external forces, physicians and their associations need to understand its past and its present status, including the challenges posed by commercialism, consumerism, bureaucratization and unprofessional behaviour. Two future scenarios are presented, one unfavourable and the other favourable to professionalism. Unless the profession acts quickly and decisively, it is likely that the unfavourable scenario will prevail. Suggestions are offered for how a favourable future can be achieved.

Author's affiliations

John R Williams, University of Ottawa

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Medical professionalism, future of medicine

Cite this article

South African Journal of Bioethics and Law 2009;2(2):48.

Article History

Date submitted: 2009-05-19
Date published: 2009-12-15

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