La souffrance éthique dans le travail des médecins

Authors: Genest, Christian
Advisor: Maranda, Marie-France
Abstract: The studies to be presented in this thesis can raise awareness on possible mental health problems, in regard to work, that are related to the medical profession. Moreover, this situation appears to be widespread, as in Europe, the United States, in Canada as in Quebec. In this regard, the report of The Quebec Physician’s Health Program (QPHP) confirmed difficulties of this order encountered in Quebec physicians, stating that the number of requests for assistance is constantly increasing. Beyond the individual aspects, and to understand the suffering at work, recent researches indicate the importance of taking into account the context of work in which medicine is practiced today: institutional and organizational elements, and elements related to medical practice and medical culture. It does seem that certain aspects proper to the medical work deserve to be investigated differently. In our view, the ethical dilemmas faced by physicians every day often place them in a difficult and delicate position, coming in conflict with what they are like in "subject", "self"; also in contradiction with their medical training and ultimately in contradiction with the oath to which they have committed. According to our assumption, these dilemmas would be too often involved in a type of suffering qualified as ethical. By the use of doctors “narratives of practice” willing to reveal the sources of that suffering, and by the conceptual analysis of the psychodynamics of work (Dejours & Deranty, 2010), it appears that a different understanding could shed light on this painful reality. The thesis identifies three typical-situations, which enable to visualize the nature of ethical suffering: we have named "the noose is tightening", a "constant battle" and an "imposed collaboration". Overall, the gaps that develop between the demands from the various organisms that govern the medical profession, the patient needs and the values (professional and personal) of physicians often lead them to opt for challenging decisions where different logics become hardly reconcilable. Ethic suffering arising from such decisions will have a significant incidence on how they are as “subject” and as health professionals, in brief about their identity.
Document Type: Thèse de doctorat
Issue Date: 2012
Open Access Date: 18 April 2018
Grantor: Université Laval
Collection:Thèses et mémoires

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