A landmark legal judgment in 1969 that established the principle according to which it can be legally, as well as ethically, justifiable to violate an explicit or implicit promise of confidentiality. In Tarasoff, the court held that there is a legal and moral duty for a medical attendant to violate an oath of secrecy if doing so can save the life of an innocent person. The precedent has been accepted and adopted in many jurisdictions throughout the world and applies in public health practice. There are many discussions in legal and ethical publications. See http://www.publichealthlaw.net/Reader/docs/Tarasoff.pdf.
Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology.