|(a) The health and safety of patients shall be the
first consideration of the practitioner. The principal objective to
the practitioner is to render service to humanity. A practitioner
shall continually strive to improve his medical knowledge and skill
for the benefit of his patients and colleagues. The practitioner shall
administer to patients in a professional manner and to the best of
his ability. Secrets and personal information entrusted to him shall
be held inviolate unless disclosure is necessary to protect the welfare
of the individual or the community. A practitioner shall be temperate
in all things in recognition that his knowledge and skill are essential
to public health, welfare, and human life.
(b) A practitioner shall conduct his practice on the
highest plane of honesty, integrity, and fair dealing and shall not
mislead his patients as to the gravity of such patient's podiatric
medical needs. A practitioner shall not abandon a patient he has undertaken
to treat. The practitioner may discontinue treatment after reasonable
notice has been given to the patient by the practitioner of the practitioner's
intention to discontinue treatment and the patient has had a reasonable
time to secure the services of another practitioner or all podiatric
medical services actually begun have been completed and there is no
contract or agreement to provide further treatment.
(c) A practitioner shall not aid an unethical practitioner
or engage in any subterfuge with any person, business, or organization.
The practitioner shall expose any illegal, unethical, or dishonest
conduct of other practitioners and cooperate with those invested with
the responsibility of enforcement of the law and these rules of conduct.
(d) A person under a practitioner's care or treatment
on whom podiatric medical surgery is to be performed in connection
with such care or treatment should be informed by the practitioner
of the identity of the surgeon before the surgery is performed.
(e) The practitioner has special knowledge which his
patient does not have; therefore, to avoid misunderstanding he should
advise his patient in advance of beginning treatment of the nature
and extent of the treatment needed; the approximate time required
to perform the recommended treatment and services; and any further
or additional services or return by the patient for treatment, adjustments,
or consultation and the time in which this shall occur. A practitioner
should inform his patients as to the fees to be charged for services
before the services are performed, regardless of whether the fees
are charged on a case basis, on the basis of a separate charge for
each service, or a combination of these two methods, or some other
basis. If an exact fee for a particular service, as in extended care
cases, cannot be quoted to a patient, a fair and reasonable estimate
of what the fee will be and the basis on which it will be determined
should be given the patient.
(f) A practitioner shall not tender or receive a commission
for a referral.