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1. the ability to function in an independent fashion.
2. in bioethics, self-determination that is free from both controlling interferences by others and personal limitations preventing meaningful choice (such as inadequate understanding or faulty reasoning). Having the capacity to act with autonomy does not guarantee that a person will actually do so with full understanding and without external controlling influences. adj., adj auton´omous.


The condition or state of being autonomous, able to make decisions unaided by others.
[auto- + G. nomos, law]


/au·ton·o·my/ (aw-ton´ah-me) the state of functioning independently, without extraneous influence.auton´omous


Etymology: Gk, autos + nomos, law
the quality of having the ability or tendency to function independently. autonomous, adj.


An individual’s right to self-determination.
The ability of an individual to exercise his or her rights, have choices respected, remain independent and be involved in his or her own care decisions.

Ethical principle of individual self-determination.
Vox populi
The personal capacity to consider alternatives, make choices and act without undue influence or interference from others.


Vox populi Personal capacity to consider alternatives, make choices, and act without undue influence or interference of others. See Functional autonomy, Physician autonomy.


nursing A patient's personal independence; of being self-governing.
[auto- + G. nomos, law]

autonomy (·tˑ·n·mē),

n a principle of medical ethics according to which a person should respect the rights of other individuals to freely determine their own choices and decisions.


Condition or state of being autonomous, able to make decisions unaided by others.
[auto- + G. nomos, law]

Patient discussion about autonomy

Q. In the future will he with ASD ever be able to live independently? I have a friend who is staying as a paying guest and is being taken care of by all our family members. In the future will he with ASD ever be able to live independently?

A. I am very much moved by your deeds.

• Many people with autism do flourish and go on to hold responsible jobs and live independently. Others have the intellectual abilities to be employed but are held back by their inability to adapt socially to the stresses of everyday life.

• The focus of every intervention program for the person with autism should be to work on helping them adapt to living in society. Their quality of life and ability to function is far more important than how they do on an I.Q. test.

Q. Where should i go when i feel down and lonely? is there like an independence way to lift my spirit?

A. I spend a lot of time in "my room". It has a window to look out and a comfortable chair to sit and think in. I can shut the door to get real quiet. I can read and study things. Reading gets my mind off of down feelings. There is also a time for going out walking. It frees my mind. When I come back I seem to have a new perspective on things. Sometimes I go and sit out in the woods for awhile where I live. I like listening to the birds and nature sounds. Its nice to see clouds going by in the sky or the stars at night. If something's really bothering you, call on someone you can trust and talk it out. Just find that activity that suits you best and get busy at it.

Q. I am wondering if there is any chance that a child with autism could lead an independent life later. My elder daughter was diagnosed with autism and I look out for information on raising a child with autism. I am wondering if there is any chance that a child with autism could lead an independent life later. I need help.

A. Hi there. Mellou here. I have a 19 yr old son that has autism. Yes I believe that children can be taught to live a independant life. My son attends a Independant Living Center to learn how to be self sufficiate and so far he is learning alot. It is just taking awhile for him to get at it and do it.
Hope this helps you hon. Good luck

More discussions about autonomy
References in periodicals archive ?
The autonomist concept of 'self-valorization' is also a useful attempt to describe and understand the exhilaration of the workers and the qualitative changes they enjoy under workers' control.
Autonomists attempt to provide mutual support networks of people who have experiences with mental health systems.
A screening programme that sought an outcome of 100% for people making an informed choice would be supported by the autonomists and often by the beneficists.
Rather than envisioning a hierarchical relationship between the First Nations and non-native governments--a vision founded in part on ethnocentric attitudes that view native cultural differences as giving rise to a need for "protection" and "assimilation"--the courts should adopt an autonomist approach to the interpretation of federal jurisdiction under s.
See for instance Steve Wright, Storming Heaven: Class Composition and Struggle in Italian Autonomist Marxism, Pluto Press, London, 2002, p.
Attempts to create a more representative system of administration, together with the efforts of autonomists, consistently complicated the anti-colonial struggles of Cuban nationalists and their supporters in the United States.
The autonomist voice advocates a Quebec that asserts itself at the forefront of all sectors of activity that are judged to be indispensable to its development.
Protests against government-mandated price hikes for fuel oil combined with a building autonomist movement in the eastern part of the country has put the administration in its most precarious state since Mesa took office in 2003 (see NotiSur, 2005-01-28).
Apart from a cell of autonomists, whose liking for Nazism dated back to the pre-war period, the majority of the Alsatian population remained totally indifferent to the various themes developed by the German propaganda.
In the eighty-seven years since Luxemburg's demise, a startling range of ideological interpretations and expectations--some compatible, others conflicted, and a few simply contradictory--have been projected onto her diminutive profile by groups eager to use her as a symbol: from the Bolsheviks who slid her stinging critique of Lenin beneath the Kremlin carpet, to dissident East Germans seeking democratic reform during the cold war, to anti-Stalinist radicals of the New Left, to present-day autonomists, antiglobalization activists, and antifascists who find her anarcho-Marxist tendencies appealing.
Bolognese Autonomists like Franco Berardi, aka "Bifo," who created the famous neo-Dada free radio "Radio-Alice," were fascinated by technointelligence and its potential for popular resistance.
In a work of synthesis published in 2008, summarizing three decades of teachings on Canadian federalism, my Universite Laval colleague Rejean Pelletier squarely espouses the autonomist approach of the Tremblay Commission as depicted by Rocher.