Aim: This paper seeks to explore doctors' treatment decisions made without parental consent when managing adolescents presenting with sexual and reproductive health issues.
Methods: Based on a qualitative approach, in-depth interviews with 25 doctors throughout Malaysia were conducted. All audio-recorded interviews were transcribed verbatim and analyzed using a thematic approach.
Results: Generally, doctors weigh any decision by examining the health risks and benefits involved. While fear of litigation influences treatment decisions, a strong adherence to the ethical duty of 'do no harm' outweighs other considerations. When all options are risky, choosing what is considered 'the lesser of two evils,' i.e., what is perceived to be in the best interest of the adolescent, is adopted.
Conclusions: The complexity of a medical decision related to adolescent SRH issues is increased further when legal requirements are not in synch with the ethical and personal values of doctors. The laws relating to parental consent should be promulgated with a provision allowing doctors to exercise discretion in terms of treating specific SRH issues without parental consent.
RESULTS: Men and boys trafficked for fishing (aged 12-55) were mainly from Cambodia (n = 217) and Myanmar (n = 55). Common physical health problems included dizzy spells (30.2%), exhaustion (29.5%), headaches (28.4%) and memory problems (24.0%). Nearly one-third (29.1%) reported pain in three or more areas of their body and one-quarter (26.9%) reported being in "poor" health. Physical health symptoms were strongly associated with: severe violence; injuries; engagement in long-haul fishing; immigration detention or symptoms of mental health disorders. Survivors were exposed to multiple work hazards and were perceived as disposable when disabled by illness or injuries. Employers struggled to apply internationally recommended Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) practices in Thailand. Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) encountered challenges when trying to obtain healthcare for uninsured fishermen. Challenges included fee payment, service provision in native languages and officials siding with employers in disputes over treatment costs and accident compensation. Survivors' post-trafficking concerns included: money problems (75.9%); guilt and shame (33.5%); physical health (33.5%) and mental health (15.3%).
CONCLUSION: Fishermen in this region are exposed to very serious risks to their health and safety, and their illnesses and injuries often go untreated. Men who enter the fishing industry in Thailand, especially migrant workers, require safe working conditions and targeted protections from human trafficking. Survivors of the crime of sea slavery must be provided with the compensation they deserve and the care they need, especially psychological support.
CASE PRESENTATION: 55 year old gentlemen presented with generalised pruritic erythematous rash on trunk and extremities. Six weeks prior to his consultation, antiviral agent entecavir was commenced for his chronic hepatitis B infection. Skin biopsy revealed acanthosis and focal lymphocytes with moderate perivascular lymphocyte infiltration. Skin condition recovered completely after caesation of offending drug and short course of oral corticosteroids.
CONCLUSION: This case highlight the awareness of clinicians on the spectrum of cutaneous drug reaction related to entecavir therapy.