Ethics in the United States

Professional Ethics

The Center for the Study of Ethics in Professions posts hundreds of professional ethics code on the Internet, plus a bibliography of code-related treatises. They also provide links to other ethics codes sites.

Medical Ethics

The American Medical Association’s Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs (CEJA) publishes a Code of Medical Ethics, comprised of CEJA Opinions, CEJA Reports, the Principals of Medical Ethics, the Fundamental Elements of the Patient-Physician Relationship. Some of this material is available through the AMA Code of Professional Ethics page. The Code is included in the AMA’s Policy Finder, or you can purchase an print copy with annotations from the AMA Bookstore. For questions about AMA ethics, call the General Counsel’s office at the AMA headquarters in Chicago (312-464-5448).

For more information, questions, etc., try calling the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies (202-334-2352), one of its regional libraries and/or another medical library or association. You may also want to check the Encyclopedia of Associations(available as a multi-volume hard cover, on the Gale Directory Library and on Lexis (ENASSC)) to find relevant associations and their telephone numbers.

Tuskegee Syphilis Study in relation to Crime and Race

Tuskegee Syphilis Study is included in the Encyclopedia of Race and Crime (1), beginning with: The Tuskegee Syphilis Study is most often remembered for its unethical research design rather than for any significant scientific findings. When the study’s true nature was made public, 40 years after the project began, the effect was not only a national scandal but a considerable increase in distrust by African Americans toward the U.S. government. This section examines the design and implementation of the Tuskegee study and discusses its lasting social implications and its impact on research methodology and ethics. In 1928 a Chicago-based philanthropic organization, the Julius Rosenwald Fund, approached the U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) in an effort to improve health care services and education for Black Americans in the rural South. Previously, the PHS had conducted a study in Mississippi concluding that 25% of more than 2,000 Black participants had tested positive for syphilis.

Ethics of the Legal Secretary

For a meaning of it, read Ethics of the Legal Secretary in the Legal Dictionary here. There are more information about this issue in relation to the Legal Secretary here.

Professional Responsibility

Professional Responsibility issues are related to the information and materials above about Legal Ethics, Medical Ethics and Professional Ethics.


See Also

Certified Public Accountants (CPAs)
Legal Medicine
Legal Malpractice
Legal Ethics

Notes and References

  1. Entry about Tuskegee Syphilis Study in the Encyclopedia of Race and Crime

See Also

This issue in the California legal Encyclopedia

Ethics: Open and Free Legal Research of US Law

Federal Primary Materials

The U.S. federal government system consists of executive, legislative, and judicial branches, each of which creates information that can be the subject of legal research about Ethics. This part provides references, in relation to Ethics, to the legislative process, the federal judiciary, and the primary sources of federal law (cases, statutes, and regulations).

Federal primary materials about Ethics by content types:

Laws and Regulations

US Constitution
Federal Statutory Codes and Legislation

Federal Case Law and Court Materials

U.S. Courts of Appeals
United States courts of appeals, inclouding bankruptcy courts and bankcruptcy appellate panels:

Federal Administrative Materials and Resources

Presidential Materials

Materials that emanate from the President’s lawmaking function include executive orders for officers in departments and agencies and proclamations for announcing ceremonial or commemorative policies. Presidential materials available include:

Executive Materials

Federal Legislative History Materials

Legislative history traces the legislative process of a particular bill (about Ethics and other subjects) for the main purpose of determining the legislators’ intent behind the enactment of a law to explain or clarify ambiguities in the language or the perceived meaning of that law (about Ethics or other topics), or locating the current status of a bill and monitoring its progress.

State Administrative Materials and Resources

State regulations are rules and procedures promulgated by state agencies (which may apply to Ethics and other topics); they are a binding source of law. In addition to promulgating regulations, state administrative boards and agencies often have judicial or quasi-judicial authority and may issue administrative decisions affecting Ethics. Finding these decisions can be challenging. In many cases, researchers about Ethics should check state agency web sites for their regulations, decisions, forms, and other information of interest.

State rules and regulations are found in codes of regulations and administrative codes (official compilation of all rules and regulations, organized by subject matter). Search here:

State opinions of the Attorney General (official written advisory opinions on issues of state law related to Ethics when formerly requested by a designated government officer):

Tools and Forms

Law in Other Regions

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