Intended for healthcare professionals


US court rules on confidentiality

BMJ 1996; 312 doi: (Published 29 June 1996) Cite this as: BMJ 1996;312:1629

Relations between a patient and his or her psychotherapist are confidential and are protected from disclosure in federal trials, the US Supreme Court ruled this month. Previously, only attorney-client communications and communications between husband and wife were protected as privileged in federal courts. To date, all 50 US states have rules that, in some way, protect forced disclosure of therapist-patient relationships.

America's highest court made the …

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