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Italian doctors can report illegal immigrants to police, under proposed law

BMJ 2009; 338 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.b548 (Published 09 February 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;338:b548
  1. Fabio Turone
  1. 1Milan

    A law that will allow health professionals to report to the authorities any patient whom they suspect of being an illegal immigrant has been proposed by the Italian centre right government led by Silvio Berlusconi.

    Until now health professionals have been barred from reporting patients to the police, except in well defined cases in which evidence indicates a direct involvement in a crime.

    But the “security package” approved last week by the Italian Senate, despite widespread criticism, overturns the previous ban, stating that doctors are free to report those they suspect may be living illegally in the country.

    “It’s the end of professional confidentiality,” said Kostas Moschochoritis, director …

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