Dutch doctors warned for Googling

Dutch doctors should not google their patients, if they were not authorized. That may affect trust, said Maartje Schermer and Evert van Leeuwen in the Dutch newspaper.

In the U.S. psychiatrists have admitted to find information about their patients regularly on the Internet. They can find out whether they are being lied to. Schermer and van Leeuwen assume that this also happens in the Netherlands.

Fencer finds that clinicians advise patients not to Google out of curiosity.

Doctors Federation KNMG has no guidelines for using the Internet, but does require that the physician may not further penetrate the privacy of the patient than the medical aid calls.

The physician must also decide in advance what he wants to know and whether they can get that information not just from the patient. Psychologists Association NIP recommends not to Google patients.

The Dutch Psychiatric Association points out however that information on the Internet should be available to everyone. However it would be a good idea to discuss this in advance with the patient.

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