Emergence of Professional Ethics

24/07/2022 0 By indiafreenotes

Professional ethics encompass the personal and corporate standards of behavior expected by professionals.

The word professionalism originally applied to vows of a religious order. By no later than the year 1675, the term had seen secular application and was applied to the three learned professions: divinity, law, and medicine. The term professionalism was also used for the military profession around this same time.

Professionals and those working in acknowledged professions exercise specialist knowledge and skill. How the use of this knowledge should be governed when providing a service to the public can be considered a moral issue and is termed “professional ethics”.

It is capable of making judgments, applying their skills, and reaching informed decisions in situations that the general public cannot because they have not attained the necessary knowledge and skills.[4] One of the earliest examples of professional ethics is the Hippocratic oath to which medical doctors still adhere to this day.


On a theoretical level, there is debate as to whether an ethical code for a profession should be consistent with the requirements of morality governing the public. Separatists argue that professions should be allowed to go beyond such confines when they judge it necessary. This is because they are trained to produce certain outcomes which may take moral precedence over other functions of society. For example, it could be argued that a doctor may lie to a patient about the severity of his or her condition if there is reason to believe that telling the patient would cause so much distress that it would be detrimental to his or her health. This would be a disrespect of the patient’s autonomy, as it denies the patient information that could have a great impact on his or her life. This would generally be seen as morally wrong. However, if the end of improving and maintaining health is given a moral priority in society, then it may be justifiable to contravene other moral demands in order to meet this goal.  Separatism is based on a relativist conception of morality that there can be different, equally valid, moral codes that apply to different sections of society and differences in codes between societies. If moral universalism is ascribed to, then this would be inconsistent with the view that professions can have a different moral code, as the universalist holds that there is only one valid moral code for all.

Ethics commonly related to the moral principle or guideline that governs a person’s behavior or the conducting of activities. In general ethics knows as the branch of knowledge that deals with moral principles. In history of ethic, Thomas Percival (1740-1804) was published a code of medical ethics for physicians in 1794. He also creates the first code of ethics for professional ethics. The code is the first code of ethics to be adopted by a professional organization, AMA. Today’s, modern professions also adopted codes of ethics because it is a common standards, the minimization of the interpersonal strife that the emphasis on individual honor encourages. Ethic also as a framework of weal that permits professionals to assert their independence of their nominal employers in the name of service to other.

Professional is a person that conducting career and ethic is guideline or principle that should be practice in life or organization. Professional ethics is an important in field of applied ethics and assesses the moral dimension of human activity in occupations that have professional status. Professional ethics include law, medicine, ministry and by extension higher education, journalism, engineering and management. Professional ethics is concerned with the moral conduct and standards governing the profession and its members.

Professional ethics will help a professional make decision, control their work pressure, control their task, specific the risk that will face by professional, integrity in work and many more. Professional ethics will define the profession’s special relation to the market place. Members earn livelihood in professional roles, accepting certain standard in the form of codes, other measures, continuing education and support mechanism for member.

Professional ethics raise a number of theoretical and specialized questions that are not easily resolved. Among the theoretical issues is the extent to which the special norms and principles governing the professions override individual rights and other moral principles. Professional ethics is concerned with the obligations and responsibility that arise out of a particular kind of service performed for individuals or groups, and in that sense approximate obligations arising out of contractual agreements. In themselves the norms of professional ethics do not define the social or personal relationships of individuals towards one another.