SGIM Position Statement on Care for Undocumented Immigrants

Article Type: 
Blog

The Society of General Internal Medicine (SGIM) recently release a SGIM position statement on the care provided to non-citizens with kidensy disease. The official position statement available online at http://www.sgim.org/file%20library/sgim/about%20us/position%20statements/sgim-ethics-committee-statement-on-care-for-undocumented-immigrants.pdf the following:

  1. 1. There is a collective ethical obligation amongst health care professionals and health care systems to ensure access to standard medical care (including as an example maintenance dialysis and transplant for patients with end-stage kidney disease) to individuals regardless of citizenship status, ethnic origin, nationality, native language, legal or social standing, or economic means. 1,2
  2. 2. Physicians should, individually and collectively, advocate for public and charitable funding programs to eliminate financial barriers to medical care. All physicians should fulfill their social responsibility for delivering high-quality health care to those without the resources to pay. 3
  3. 3. Physicians should uphold patient confidentiality and should not report nonmedical information about the documentation status of undocumented noncitizens to the authorities.
  4. 4. Physicians should, individually and collectively, work with all relevant stakeholders including patients, policy makers, health insurers, and healthcare systems to ensure, within the best of their abilities, that health resources are justly distributed amongst all.

[1] Adapted from the Declaration of Geneva http://www.wma.net/en/30publications/10policies/g1/

[2] Adapted from the American Medical Association's Health and Ethics Policy H- 160.987 Access to Medical Care

[3] AMA Principle 3-6b.-All health care facilities and health professionals should fulfill their social responsibility for delivering high-quality health care to those without the resources to pay

ARxC is proud to be a member of the Coalition of Kidney Care for Non-Citizens (CKCNC), a group of committed patient advocates who are in support of SGIM's position statement.