Politics and bioethics essay

This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Abstract Recent decades have seen the emergence of two new fields of inquiry into ethical issues in medicine. These are the fields of bioethics and of health and human rights.

Politics and bioethics essay

Hire Writer Inthe United States Supreme Court included the diagnosis of mental retardation as a ground for prohibiting execution. Advocates of physician involvement in the death penalty often argue that the goals of medicine can be reconciled with those of capital punishment.

The primary objective of the death penalty is to deter crime by executing those who have been proven guilty of heinous wrongdoings. The main purpose of medicine, on the other hand, is to alleviate suffering. In the context of medical participation in capital punishment, these goals are both met — society is rid of a criminal in a civilized and painless manner.

In some cases, criminals that have been proven to be mentally ill are freed. But facts prove otherwise. Forensic psychology is an entirely different discipline from clinical psychology. The latter is obligated by the Hippocratic tradition to give primacy to the needs of the patient British Medical Association The former, in sharp contrast, is bound to the objective truth — regardless of what a forensic psychologist may find on the prisoner whom he or she is studying.

This difficult intersection between medicine and the law would definitely affect the processes of establishing guilt or innocence and resolving disputes British Medical Association The medical profession is also tainted with a long history of physician involvement in the torture of prisoners.

The Nuremberg trials revealed shocking atrocities committed by Nazi doctors and biomedical scientists during the Holocaust. Under their direct supervision, countless psychiatric patients and senile elderly persons were killed. Furthermore, they subjected unconsenting concentration camp inmates to cruel and sometimes lethal experiments Caplan It was first revealed in that doctors and other personnel were force-feeding and using truth serum on detainees in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Inmedical personnel at Abu Ghraib treated torture victims and recorded the evidence, but failed to report these incidents.

Bioethics and health and human rights: a critical view

The International Committee of the Red Cross then reported in that the usage physical and psychological torture on prisoners were rampant in Guantanamo. Why would doctors — people who are supposed to protect life — participate in torture? It must be noted that the Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib doctors were working in prisons that held individuals that were believed to be terrorists.

Simply put, the duty of the Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib doctors to the detainees under their care was to treat them not out of adherence to the Hippocratic Oath but that of the desire to help defeat the enemies of the US.

But it is never acceptable for military physicians to participate in torture. Article 1 of the Regulations in Time of Armed Conflict likewise known as the Havana Declaration maintains that there is no difference between medical ethics in times of armed conflict and medical ethics in times of peace.

The Politics of Bioethics by Richard John Neuhaus | Articles | First Things

Article 2, meanwhile, makes clear that the primary task of the physician is to preserve health and save life, therefore prohibiting him or her from: Weakening the physical or mental strength of a human being without therapeutic justification; and c.

Employing scientific knowledge which would imperil health or destroy life Singer and Viens Because the primary task of doctors is to preserve health and save life, they are morally required to report incidents of torture or mistreatment of prisoners.

In such cases, they have an ethical duty to take prompt action as failure to take an immediate stand makes protest at a later stage more difficult. They should report the matter to appropriate authorities or international agencies who can investigate but without exposing patients, their families or themselves to foreseeable serious risk of harm.

If he or she suspects or witness the abuse of detainees, he or she should immediately report his or her findings to the judiciary and any other investigative body Action for Torture Survivors, CPT, Amnesty International, etc. But the doctor is not obliged to immediately report cases of torture if doing so would imperil his or her life.

In this case, it is necessary for him or her to wait until the threat to his or her security has passed and or there are already relevant third parties to whom she could disclose his or her findings Singer and Viens The end of medicine is not limited to the treatment of the sick and the injured.

Politics and bioethics essay

It should likewise concern itself with the health of the mind, spirit and the community as a whole. There are certain societal conditions that result in the physical, mental and spiritual degradation of a given populace.

Politics and bioethics essay

The torture of prisoners is a good example of these societal problems — victims of torture are not only physically injured but are also stripped of their dignity as human beings. Being a doctor, therefore, means not only preserving health and saving life but likewise going against a status quo that would hinder him or her from fulfilling these duties.

Human health, after all, is more than just the absence of disease.What is bioethics? “Bioethics” can be understood in a broader or narrower way. Following the broader construal, bioethics includes not only philosophical study of the ethics of medicine, but also such areas as medical law, medical anthropology, medical sociology, health politics, health economics and even some areas of medicine itself.

Politics and Bioethics The traditional roles of the physician are to stave off death and to comfort the dying.

The sick and the injured assume that a doctor will be able to . The traditional roles of the physician are to stave off death and to comfort the dying. The sick and the injured assume that a doctor will be able to prolong their lives by curing them of their disease.

Bioethics [PHIL ] Term Paper General description The Final Paper is a bioethics essay, written on a theme related to and reflecting on course material. The theme, and to an extent the approach you take to the theme, are up to you.

The relationship between bioethics and politics arose principally from the increased discussion of bioethics in the public forum. Step by step, the original scope of bioethics, the reflection on the ethical issues raised by new technologies in health, science, and biomedicine in general, led to an increasing politicization of bioethical issues.

Human Dignity and Bioethics: Essays Commissioned by the President's Council on Bioethics

For an alternative view of the resources Kant can bring to bear on controversies in bioethics, see Susan M. Shell's essay in this volume. xi.

The Politics of Bioethics by Richard John Neuhaus November In ethics, and in bioethics specifically, politics is frequently seen as an alien intrusion on, or a poor substitute for, the search for clear and unambiguous guidance. This essay is adapted from a chapter in the book Human Dignity and Bioethics: Essays Commissioned by the. We will write a custom essay sample on Politics and Bioethics specifically for you for only $ $/page. The article presents an essay adapted from a chapter of the book "Human Dignity and Bioethics: Essays Commissioned by the Presidents Council on Bioethics," by Richard John Neuhaus. HUMAN DIGNITY AND BIOETHICS: ESSAYS COMMISSIONED BY THE PRESIDENT'S COUNCIL ON BIOETHICS. Beeman, Patrick C.

On human dignity as a source of political entitlements, see the essays by Paul Weithman and Martha Nussbaum in this volume.

The Politics of Bioethics