Professionalism in emergency medicine. SAEM Ethics Committee. Society for Academic Emergency Medicine

Acad Emerg Med. 1998 Dec;5(12):1193-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1553-2712.1998.tb02695.x.


The Society for Academic Emergency Medicine (SAEM), with the support and participation of the American Board of Emergency Medicine (ABEM), the Council of Residency Directors (CORD), the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP), the Emergency Medicine Residents Association (EMRA), the American Academy of Emergency Medicine (AAEM), and the Association of Academic Chairs of Emergency Medicine (AACEM), initiated a project entitled Professionalism in Emergency Medicine. Its concepts were developed by the SAEM Ethics Committee, and are intended to describe proper behaviors and attitudes of the successful practitioner of emergency medicine. The behaviors described are not primarily scientific or technical, since those are defined by the core curriculum for residency training and are tested through certification examinations. This document identifies attitudes and behaviors that enhance trust by placing the patient's interest above other interests. This concept serves as the operative definition of professionalism. The purpose of this article is to clarify the professional attitudes and knowledge that are important to the emergency physician (EP). While no physician is likely to meet idealized standards, all EPs must meet basic standards while striving for the ideal. Awareness of these standards must begin early in the socialization process of emergency medical professionals. The standards must be integrated into residency training as well as the clinical practice of all EPs.

MeSH terms

  • Attitude
  • Emergency Medicine*
  • Ethics, Medical*
  • Physician-Patient Relations
  • Professional Competence*
  • United States