versión On-line ISSN 1695-6141
Infectious illnesses are an important health problem and a challenge for scientists, doctors and investigators. At the present time there are hundreds of thousands of people suffering from leprosy. The stigma and the inabilities produced makes them socially disabled. The appearance of Bioethics as a new paradigm of medical thought, with its charity principles, non balefulness, autonomy and justice, has revolutionised the world of the medical sciences. A philosophical analysis of an important dilemma ofbioethics in our environment is performed: the medical ethics and Hansen's illness (leprosy), humanism as the base of the patient- doctor relationship and the reflection in the impact psychosocial and economic impact of leprosy. Some reflections that doctors and nurses, as well as the rest of the Basic Health Team and Primary Attention workers should bear in mind when dealing with leprosy patients are offered. The conclusion is that the doctor-patient relationship when dealing with leprosy requires active humanism and, psychosocial, it is necessary to conquer the taboo and the discrimination that leprosy sparks off in the community.
Palabras clave : leprosy; Hansen' s iIllness; bioethics; humanism.