The changes initiated by the new National Civil and Commercial Code in Argentina underline the pediatric task to empower children’s and adolescents’ developing autonomy. In this paper, we have framed a model describing autonomy in child healthcare. We carried out a literature review focusing on i) the concept of autonomy referring to the absolute value of the autonomous individual, and ii) the age-driven process of competent decision-making development. We summarized our findings developing a conceptual model that includes the child, the pediatrician and the parents. The pediatrician-child relationship is based on different forms of guidance and cooperation, resulting in varying levels of activity and passivity. Parental authority influences the extent of autonomy, based on the level of respect of the child’s moral equality. Contextual, existential, conceptual, and social-ethical conditions shall be considered when applying the model to facilitate dialogue between pediatricians, children, parents and other actors.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health