publicHealthEthics-course_Outline&Introduction
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5
×
 

publicHealthEthics-course_Outline&Introduction

on

  • 7,699 views

 

Statistics

Views

Total Views
7,699
Views on SlideShare
7,699
Embed Views
0

Actions

Likes
4
Downloads
262
Comments
1

0 Embeds 0

No embeds

Accessibility

Categories

Upload Details

Uploaded via as Microsoft PowerPoint

Usage Rights

© All Rights Reserved

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Processing…
  • thak you so much ambrish. i shall acknowledge your contributions in my presentation
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Processing…
Post Comment
Edit your comment
  • about readings/content assignments office hours by appointment
  • hand these out
  • - also known as "moral philosophy" and "philosophical ethics" - refers to philosophical reflection on the nature and function of morality (that is, philosophical reflection on social conventions about right and wrong human conduct--on social principles about doing good, avoiding harm, respecting others, observing rules of justice, etc.) descriptive ethics: more social science, empirical; attempts to describe and explain moral views that are held A systematic understanding of right and wrong as it relates to: - rules or standards of right conduct - good character, virtuous behaviour
  • metaethics: philosophical study of the nature of moral judgments, methods of justification re: ethical theory and particular ethical judgments; conceptual analysis kinds of ethical theory that concern us most are: (1) general normative ethics --where the task is to advance and provide a reasoned justification of an overall theory of moral obligation, thereby establishing an ethical theory that provides a general answer to the question: what is morally right and what is morally wrong? * normative ethics concerned with questions of what is right/wrong, good/bad; whereas *metaethics* concerned with the meaning or significance of calling something right or wrong, good or bad, for example, and whether moral judgments about good or bad are objective or subjective and (2) applied normative ethics (and bioethics is one branch of applied ethics) where the task is to resolve particular moral problems by appealing to or applying general normative ethics (e.g., Can maintaining patient confidentiality in the face of harm to third parties be morally justifiable; if so, under what conditions?)
  • When there is conflict of moral values , beliefs, and objectives e.g. between the health care providers and the patients. For instance, the classical example of blood transfusion to a severely bleeding Jehovah Witness who refuses to take blood, even this refusal can lead to severe life threat and eventually death. When there is conflict of commitments and responsibilities : for example at one hand there is the commitment of the health care provider to preserve his/her patients' lives, however there is the responsibility to "rationally" use the resources available to him/her on the other hand. The classical example of which is "one ICU bed, and two patients: whom to choose?" When there is the concern that our patients rights/values are not respected . When the issue in focus is related to justice in allocating the available resources . A classical example is which of the cancer drugs should be funded publicly. Should we choose a drug which efficiently improves the quality of life of few patients? Or a drug that makes little improvement for a larger number of patients. Finally, when we, as care providers feel that we are not sure what we should do .
  • lenses: readily switched for a different view, can be layered; some provide clearer perceptions of problems than others, but can gain different understandings by trying different options; challenge = seeking out best lenses for problem at hand
  • e.g., where you see this kind of thinking operating? (e.g., duty to get free and informed consent…doesn’t depend on consequences) From the Greek word deon , meaning duty Pure deontological theory (e.g., Kant) holds that consequences are morally irrelevant and focuses, instead, on the essential nature of actions, motives, and moral agents Mixed deontological theory (e.g., Ross, Rawls) which incorporates aspects of Kantianism and aspects of Utilitarianism Claims that consequences may be morally relevant, although it is not the consequences of an action taken alone that determine its morality
  • e.g., where you see this kind of thinking in action? (e.g., policy-making, public health, sometimes resource allocation) A kind of teleological ethical theory (from the Greek word telos , meaning goal- or result-oriented) Described as consequentialist because they hold that no action or rule is morally right in itself—something is morally right because it produces certain consequences, e.g., it maximizes the intrinsic value of happiness/pleasure
  • e.g., of this kind of approach? kind of person a practitioner—or ethicist—is…not just concerned that your family doctor, e.g., gets good results or respect your rights…probably want to have the sense that he/she is a good person, really cares about you, etc.
  • . see if response is value judgment . what do you need to know before you can make a value judgment (e.g., who is she? (e.g., person? rabid pitbull attaching him? wounded bird? fly?) who is he (child? cat? person?) why did he kill her (instinct? accident? self-defense? murder? other?) .e.g., of how we sometimes bring value judgments to a statement that is merely descriptive = fact/value, inferential leap . other side of coin—sometimes we think a concept or statement is merely descriptive when in fact it is a value judgment (i.e., value laden)…>>>>
  • i.e., medically impossible? (e.g., reattaching a completely severed head) . not likely to achieve medical goals (whose?) (e.g., certain survival rate, certain quality of life) . not like to achieve the patient’s goals . not worth it, given the costs (to whom?)
  • definitions? examples of persons? examples of non-persons?
  • any thoughts/questions? if not, ask what some of these criteria mean and what degree must be present/demonstrated
  • person = philosophical concept human being = biological label—refers to homo sapiens
  • Category within personhood?
  • Category within personhood? or can a moral patient be considered a non-person--will depend on philosophical view
  • Ok, let’s turn now to ethical assessment and reasoning...Module 1 helpful re: necessary awareness and imagination in particular; let’s focus first on knowledge…what knowledge is required in the assessment stage…kinds of information to gather and quality of that information
  • Some of the questions you likely have as facilitators….
  • - principles meant to guide action for all in similar circumstances—e.g., principle of respect for autonomy directs us to act in ways that honour the free and informed decisions and actions of others
  • Although a thorough assessment is on-going until the issue is resolved, the next focus is on ethical reasoning…what do we do with all the information gathered in the assessment? This is where we need to polish our critical reflection skill. critical = ; reflection = So, critical reflection is the integration of questioning assumptions as part of what is means to give careful consideration
  • deductive, top-down approach : conclusion follows logically from general principles or rules plus relevant facts of situation; applying general rule to situation falling under the rule inductive, bottom-up: reason from particular instances to general rules, principles, theories; “meanings, functions and weight of a principle derive from previous moral struggles and reflection in particular circumstances” (B&C 392); e.g., causistry, use of case studies, comparisons and analogies to reach moral conclusions; practical knowledge takes priority over theoretical RE: effort to make beliefs, principles, and theories as coherent as possible; when considered judgments conflict with some aspect of a moral theory, must modify one or other to bring into equilibrium
  • lenses: readily switched for a different view, can be layered; some provide clearer perceptions of problems than others, but can gain different understandings by trying different options; challenge = seeking out best lenses for problem at hand
  • Rachels on similarity between use of theory in ethics and use of theory in science, psychology, etc. Without ethical theories, frameworks, etc.—chaos
  • Responsibility: are we responsible for others’ actions if we know that they will cause more harm than good? Integrity: Utilitarianism often demands that we put aside self-interest. Sometimes this means putting aside our own moral convictions Intentions: Utilitarianism is concerned almost exclusively about consequences, not intentions. Moral Luck: By concentrating exclusively on consequences, utilitarianism makes the moral worth of our actions a matter of luck. We must await the final consequences before we find out if our action was good or bad. Who does the calculating? Example of English in India, then wanted the best for india! Who is included? When we consider the issue of consequences, we must ask who is included within that circle. Those in our own group (group egoism) Those in our own country (nationalism) Those who share our skin color (racism) All human beings (humanism or speciesism?) All sentient beings
  • e.g., where you see this kind of thinking operating? (e.g., duty to get free and informed consent…doesn’t depend on consequences) From the Greek word deon , meaning duty Pure deontological theory (e.g., Kant) holds that consequences are morally irrelevant and focuses, instead, on the essential nature of actions, motives, and moral agents Mixed deontological theory (e.g., Ross, Rawls) which incorporates aspects of Kantianism and aspects of Utilitarianism Claims that consequences may be morally relevant, although it is not the consequences of an action taken alone that determine its morality
  • e.g., of this kind of approach? kind of person a practitioner—or ethicist—is…not just concerned that your family doctor, e.g., gets good results or respect your rights…probably want to have the sense that he/she is a good person, really cares about you, etc.
  • cf. case law
  • view is that ethics develops from social consensus formed around cases, but isn’t ethics about more than consensus— why do we agree? go back to previous slide—how do we know this guy got it right? * tie in to Schiavo by mentioning number of people who would say re: Schiavo “I just don’t get it—this was decided in law long ago…”

publicHealthEthics-course_Outline&Introduction publicHealthEthics-course_Outline&Introduction Presentation Transcript

  • INTRODUCTION TO ETHICAL ISSUES IN PUBLIC HEALTH PRACTICE & RESEARCH
    • Ghaiath M. A. Hussein
        • MBBS (ZAU, Sudan)
        • MHSc. (Bioethics, U of T, Canada)
        • MD (1st Part Comm. Med., SMSB)
    JPCMFM, Jan 2- 5, 2010
  • CONTACT INFORMATION [email_address] 0567995290 Office hours by appointment Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • ACKNOWLEDGMENT
      • Most of the slides used in this presentations are used with permission from:
      • Barbara Secker (JCB); and
      • Lawrence M. Hinman ( http://ethics.sandiego.edu )
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • PRESENTATION OVERVIEW
      • Outline of the course
      • What’s (bio)ethics?
      • What is an ‘ethical issue’?
      • How do we take our ethical decision?
      • Schools of thought in Bioethics
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • OVERVIEW OF TODAY’S SESSION
      • Introductions
      • Course objectives, learning methods and overview
      • Assignments
      • Ethics and Bioethics: Definitions & Context
      • Ethical Theories: Purposes and Approaches
      • Persons and Personhood
      • Facts and Values
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • COURSE OBJECTIVES
      • To consider critically a range of conceptual and ethical issues that we (as individuals and societies) face in health care provision.
      • To analyze these issues using ethical frameworks, and to assess the value of such frameworks.
      • To provide an opportunity to reflect critically on, challenge, develop and refine our ethical positions on particular issues.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • LEARNING METHODS
      • Majority of learning done independently (readings, reflections, assignments)
      • Course director facilitates learning in class and by appointment
      • Classes: mix of short presentations, small and large group discussions, problem/case-based learning, student seminars
      • Learn from each other’s experiences, perspectives, arguments, etc.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • LEARNING OBJECTIVES:
      • to understand the role of ethical principles, theories and frameworks in bioethics
      • to explore the concept of personhood
      • to understand the “fact/value” distinction
      • to understand and critically assess utilitarian ethical frameworks
      • to understand the key concepts of principlism
      • to understand and critically assess Kantian ethical theory
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • LEARNING OBJECTIVES:
      • to understand and critically assess Kantian ethical theory
      • to explore the notion of “relational autonomy”
      • to understand and critically assess social contract theory
      • to understand the key concept of justice
      • to understand how different conceptions of justice grow out of different ethical frameworks
      • to discuss some concrete problems of resource allocation and priority setting in health contexts
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • LEARNING OBJECTIVES:
      • to understand and critically assess feminist bioethics
      • to consider the usefulness of the different ethical frameworks for health care and research
      • to consider the potential of developing a “global bioethics”
      • to consider cultural, religious and spiritual aspects of ethical decision-making
      • to understand and critically assess Islamic ethics and Christian ethics
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • COURSE EVALUATION
      • Written ‘publishable’ paper (1500-4000 words) (60%)
        • – due 20 January 2010
      • Seminar co-presentation (40%)
        • – during the course of the module (inclusive)
        • “ Plan B”: MCQs and short notes ( according to the JPCMFM regulations )
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • ISSUE OF ETHICAL CONCERN IN PUBLIC HEALTH Why ethics in public health? Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • LET’S GIVE IT A THOUGHT!
      • Within its efforts to control the spread of Pandemic Influenza A H1N1 during the Hajj season, the government was able to provide a total of 3,000,000 doses of the newly produced vaccine.
      • The pilgrims are estimated to be 3,500,000; the working staff who are in contact with pilgrims (entries, security & health) are about 120,000 persons
      • Who should have the vaccine?
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • Figure 10.1 Changes leading to altered interaction between microbes, animals, and plants Genetic changes in microbes, plants, animals and humans Social change in human populations - in material circumstances, and behavior Human interventions, discoveries and manipulations of the environment Natural environmental change Influence on individuals and families - varies by place Over time population differences host, agent or environment factors Population variations in health and disease patterns Analysis and interpretation of differences to gain insight into the evolution of these patterns, and hence the causes Demonstrate population differences in disease rates by time, place and person/population Use information to improve health The phenomena underlying population variations Epidemiology tries to understand above phenomena
  • DIFFICULTIES FACING PUBLIC HEALTH PRACTICE
      • Scarcity of resources
      • Access to health services
      • Lack of trained personnel
      • Poverty, illiteracy , legal status
      • Role of local beliefs
      • Role of families and communities (leaders).
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • LEVELS OF MORAL RESPONSE
      • The expressive level (unanalyzed expressions or feeling that, by themselves, don’t provide reasons or justification)
      • The pre-reflective level (justification via law, religious tenets, social values, codes of ethics, etc.; accepted uncritically)
      • The reflective level (reasoned ethical argument/defence based on ethical principles, rules, virtues, values to which we consciously subscribe; justification provided)
    • Thomas J and Waluchow W, 1998
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • MORAL, OR MORALITY
      • Pertaining to or concerned with the principles or rules of right conduct or the distinction between right and wrong
      • Morality is social obligation
    11/6/2008 Ethical Issues In Community and Rural Health Care
  • MORAL DILEMMA
      • An agent morally ought to do A, and ought to do Y, but is precluded by circumstances from doing both
      • If A is done it is desirable in some respects and not desirable in other respects
      • Moral reasons are weighty on both fronts but not dominant
    11/6/2008 Ethical Issues In Community and Rural Health Care
  • ETHICS
      • explicit critical reflection on moral beliefs, practices and problems
      • philosophical study of morality
    • This is at the reflective level…
    • (contrast with “descriptive ethics”)
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • WHAT IS ETHICS?
      • A system of moral principles
      • The rule of conduct recognized in respect to particular society or human actions
      • Way of examining moral life
      • Moral reasoning of actions
    11/6/2008 Ethical Issues In Community and Rural Health Care
  • AN ISSUE IS AN ETHICAL ISSUE WHEN… … we encounter conflicting values, beliefs, goals, or responsibilities … we are concerned that persons or their rights are not being respected … we are concerned about fairness and justice … we are unsure what we should do or why we should do it, morally speaking Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • BRANCHES OF ETHICS
      • metaethics
      • general normative ethics
        • “ applied” or practical ethics
          • bioethics
          • legal ethics
          • business ethics
          • environmental ethics
          • organizational ethics
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • BIOETHICS
    • Bioethics involves critical reflection on moral problems faced in health care and research settings toward:
        • deciding what we should do (what decisions are morally right or acceptable);
        • explaining why we should do it (how do we justify our decision in moral terms); and
        • describing how we should do it (the method or manner of our response when we act on our decision).
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • WHAT IS BIOETHICS?
      • Bioethics is about the study of ethical issues arising along health care or research, and the associated decision-making process to resolve them.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • BIOETHICS Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
      • The study of ethical issues raised by public health interventions
  • WHEN DOES AN ISSUE IN PRACTICE BE AN ETHICAL ISSUE? (MODIFIED FROM BARBARA SECKER AND FRANK WAGNER)
      • When there is conflict of moral values , beliefs, and objectives e.g. between the health care providers and the patients.
      • When there is conflict of commitments and responsibilities : e.g. saving patients' lives vs. using the available resources "rationally"
      • When there is the concern that our patients rights/values are not respected .
      • When the issue in focus is related to justice in allocating the available resources
      • Finally, when we, as care providers feel that we are not sure what we should do .
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • ETHICAL JUSTIFICATION
    • In ethics, the support/reasons ultimately come from moral values, principles and theories:
      • “ I think we should do X because A and B are really important values”
      • “ Y wouldn’t be appropriate because it violates principles A and B”
      • “ X would be the right thing to do because of our obligation to do A”
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010 Jonathan Breslin, 2006
  • ETHICAL JUSTIFICATION Ethical theories and principles as lenses: “ Doing bioethics well requires appeal to the insights provided by multiple theories…the metaphor of lenses provides a more accurate and a more productive understanding of the role of theories in bioethics…” (Sherwin, The Politics of Women’s Health , 205). Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • ON WHAT BASIS DO WE MAKE MORAL DECISIONS WITH OUR CLIENTS?
      • “ Do what the Bible tells you”-- Divine Command Theories
      • “ Follow your conscience”-- The Ethics of Conscience
      • “ Watch out for #1”-- Ethical Egoism
      • “ Do the right thing”-- The Ethics of Duty
      • “ Don't dis' me”-- The Ethics of Respect
      • “ ...all Men are created ...with certain unalienable Rights”-- The Ethics of Rights
      • “ Make the world a better place”-- Utilitarianism
      • “ Daddy, that’s not fair”-- The Ethics of Justice
      • “ Be a good person”-- Virtue Ethics
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • "DO WHAT THE QURAN/BIBLE TELLS YOU” DIVINE COMMAND THEORIES
      • Being good is equivalent to doing whatever the Bible--or the Qur’an or some other sacred text or source of revelation--tells you to do.
      • “ What is right” equals “What God tells me to do.”
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • “ FOLLOW YOUR CONSCIENCE” THE ETHICS OF OUR INNER VOICE
      • Conscience tells us what is right or wrong
      • Often has a religious source
      • May be founded in a notion of human nature
      • Is often negative in character, telling us what is not right
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • "WATCH OUT FOR #1” ETHICAL EGOISM
      • Says the only person to look out for is yourself
      • Ayn Rand, The Ethics of Selfishness
      • Well known for her novel, especially Atlas Shrugged
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • "DO THE RIGHT THING" THE ETHICS OF DUTY
      • Begins with the conviction that ethics is about doing what is right, about doing your duty.
      • Duty may be determined by:
        • Reason
          • Kant: Do what any rational agent should do
        • Professional role
          • A physician’s duty to care for the sick
        • Social role
          • A parent’s duty to care for his or her children
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • DEONTOLOGICAL ETHICS (DUTY-BASED ETHICS)
      • Some say consequences are morally irrelevant
      • Others say consequences are morally relevant but by themselves don’t determine the ethical nature of action
      • Focus: rights and duties; permissible vs. mandatory actions
      • Key questions: Are we treating cases similar in all morally relevant respects alike? Are we respecting persons?
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • "DON'T DIS' ME" THE ETHICS OF RESPECT
      • Human interactions should be governed by rules of respect
      • What counts as respect can vary from one culture to another
        • Examples:
          • spitting in the sand
          • showing the soles of one’s shoes--Richardson
      • What is it that merits respect?
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • “ ... ALL MEN ARE CREATED ...WITH CERTAIN UNALIENABLE RIGHTS ” THE ETHICS OF RIGHTS
      • The most influential moral notion of the past two centuries
      • Established minimal conditions of human decency
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • “ MAKE THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE” UTILITARIANISM
      • Seeks to reduce suffering and increase pleasure or happiness
      • Demands a high degree of self-sacrifice—we must consider the consequencs for everyone.
      • Utilitarians claim the purpose of morality is to make the world a better place.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • UTILITARIANISM (CONSEQUENCE-BASED ETHICS)
      • Actions not morally right in themselves—they become morally right if they produce certain consequences
      • Focus: producing good consequences
      • Utilitarianism is a popular consequence-based theory often appealed to in bioethics
      • Key question : will this action produce the greatest overall amount of good (or the least overall harm) for the greatest number?
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • “ DADDY, THAT’S NOT FAIR” THE ETHICS OF JUSTICE
      • Begins early in the family with fairness to all family members
      • What is fair for one should be fair for all.
      • Treating people equally may not mean treating them the same.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • "BE A GOOD PERSON” VIRTUE ETHICS
      • Seeks to develop individual character
      • Assumes good persons will make good decisions
      • Developed by Plato and Aristotle
      • Integral to the Jesuit tradition
        • The Spiritual Exercises
      • Provides a way of integrating all the theories
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • VIRTUE-BASED ETHICS
      • Emphasizes moral character—not just moral action
      • Focus: not simply to act morally
    • but to be moral
      • Key questions:
        • what kind of life should I live?
        • what kind of person should I be?
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • PRINCIPLISM
    • Framework includes four clusters of moral principles for identifying and reflecting on moral problems:
      • Respect for autonomy (self-determination or self-governance)
      • Non-maleficence (avoiding harm)
      • Beneficence ( doing good)
      • Justice (treat people and groups fairly, including distributing resources fairly)
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • FEMINIST ETHICS
      • oppression (of all people, in all its forms) is morally and politically unjust and must be addressed
      • social justice requires distributive justice plus fair relationships among social groups
      • the self is essentially a “self-in-relation”
      • autonomy should be a relational (rather than an individualistic) notion
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • CLASSROOM APPLICATION Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • FACTS & VALUES
  • WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON: “ He killed her.” Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • “ Treatment is futile.” Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • FACTS, VALUES AND CENTRAL CONCEPTS Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
      • health
      • disease
      • disability
      • death
      • suffering
      • harm
      • benefit
      • best interests
      • quality of life
      • decision-making capacity
      • person
      • definition(s)?
      • purely descriptive? value-laden?
      • ethical significance?
  • THE FACT-VALUE DISTINCTION
      • fact: description of the way the world is; an actual state of affairs (“is”)
      • value: judgment about the way things should be (“ought”)
      • no “ought” can be deduced from an “is”
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • THE FACT-VALUE DISTINCTION Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
      • “ Clearly we ought not perform this surgery since there is only a 1% chance of survival. This treatment would be medically futile.”
      • “ The patient scored only 10/30 on the MMSE so we should get consent from the substitute decision-maker.”
    the inferential leap
  • THE FACT-VALUE DISTINCTION Science is the century-old endeavour to bring together by means of systematic thought the perceptible phenomena of this world into as thorough-going an association as possible. To put it boldly, it is the attempt at a posteriori reconstruction of existence by the process of conceptualisation. Science can only ascertain what is, but not what should be, and outside of its domain value judgements of all kinds remain necessary. -- Albert Einstein Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • PERSONS AND PERSONHOOD
  • YOUR THOUGHTS/INTUITIONS…
      • What/who is a “person”?
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • PERSONS AND PERSONHOOD
      • “ Personhood”: philosophical concept that attempts to capture the most basic properties of who persons are
      • “ Person”: one who has these most basic properties
      • Ethical implications: many think persons ought to be treated better than nonpersons; many think persons have rights and nonpersons do not
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010 “ Human being” is a biological term that refers to homo sapiens…
  • WHAT IS A PERSON?
    • Some proposals:
      • “ Persons” are individuals who have a sense of self, the ability to reason, possess—or are in the process of developing—a set of stable values and beliefs
      • “ Persons” are individuals who are “the subject of a life,” an on-going narrative
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • PROPOSED CRITERIA FOR PERSONHOOD (FROM T.I. WHITE, 1991) Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
      • alive
      • aware
      • + and - sensations
      • self-consciousness
      • controls own behaviour
      • recognizes other people and treats them appropriately
      • capable of analytical, conceptual thought
      • able to learn
      • can solve complicated problems with analytical thought
      • capacity for communication that suggests thought
  • “ HUMAN” VS. “PERSON” Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010 humans persons human persons
  • FURRY PERSONS (?) Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010 Matti Hali Fellini
  • WHO COUNTS AS A “PERSON”?
      • human embryos? fetuses? infants?
      • non-human animals? (some? all?)
      • humans in PVS? coma?
      • humans with severe cognitive disabilities? advanced dementia?
      • “ extraterrestrials”?
      • other?
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • “ MORAL AGENT”
      • “ Anyone responsible for the outcome of her or his actions in a specific situation”
      • “ Agency requires that a person be able to understand the situation and be free to act voluntarily on her or his best judgment”
      • Agency “implies that the person intends for something to happen as a result of that action”
    • (Ruth Purtilo)
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • “ MORAL PATIENT”
      • “ Moral patients” are worthy of ethical regard because they have interests (i.e., they can be harmed or benefited) but cannot be held morally accountable for their actions (e.g., infants, human beings with severe mental disabilities, or animals)
    • (Tom Regan)
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • ETHICAL THEORIES PURPOSES AND APPROACHES
  • ETHICAL REASONING AND JUSTIFICATION
    • Requires:
      • moral awareness & imagination
      • knowledge
      • critical reflection
      • practical reasoning
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010 What actions are ethically justifiable? Why? What character traits are ethically desirable? Why?
  • CORE KNOWLEDGE
      • How do we help reason through an ethical issue?
      • What counts as an ethical justification of a decision or action? How do we argue for and defend our ethical claims?
      • Are there any tools that can help guide us?
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • ETHICAL REASONING
    • Values and ethical principles
      • Value = something a person/community has identified as important (e.g., autonomy/self-determination)
      • Values by themselves don't tell us what we ought to do
      • Key values in bioethics have corresponding ethical principles meant to guide action (e.g., principle of respect for autonomy)
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • ETHICAL REASONING Critical reflection Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010 Jonathan Breslin, 2006 To give careful consideration To question assumptions, both our own and others’ Critical reflection is important to avoid knee-jerk emotional responses and “jumping to conclusions,” as well as failing to take other perspectives into account…
  • ETHICAL JUSTIFICATION “ Ethics focuses on the reasons why an action is considered right or wrong. It asks people to justify their positions and beliefs by rational arguments that can persuade others.” -- Bernard Lo. Resolving Ethical Dilemmas , 3rd ed. (2005) Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010 Jonathan Breslin, 2006
  • ETHICAL JUSTIFICATION
    • Practical reasoning
      • The ability to reach a well-supported [i.e., well-reasoned] answer to a well-defined question ( Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy )
      • The idea of the well-supported answer simply means being able to provide good reasons for the conclusion you reach or the opinion you hold.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010 Jonathan Breslin, 2006
  • ETHICAL JUSTIFICATION
    • In ethics, the support/reasons ultimately come from moral values, principles and theories:
      • “ I think we should do X because A and B are really important values”
      • “ Y wouldn’t be appropriate because it violates principles A and B”
      • “ X would be the right thing to do because of our obligation to do A”
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010 Jonathan Breslin, 2006
  • APPROACHES TO ETHICAL REASONING
      • deductive approach
      • inductive approach
      • reflective equilibrium or coherence theory
        • ethical theory judgments in particular cases
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • ETHICAL JUSTIFICATION
      • There is no universally accepted ethical theory or top-ranked principle
      • … but that’s ok/understandable…
      • Different theories and principles illuminate different concerns that can serve as points of reflection
      • Frameworks—or lenses—with which to reflect and attempt to resolve problems
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010 NOW WHAT??
  • ETHICAL JUSTIFICATION Ethical theories and principles as lenses: “ Doing bioethics well requires appeal to the insights provided by multiple theories…the metaphor of lenses provides a more accurate and a more productive understanding of the role of theories in bioethics…” (Sherwin, The Politics of Women’s Health , 205). Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • ETHICAL THEORIES, PRINCIPLES AND FRAMEWORKS
      • help identify, explore, clarify the ethical questions/issues
      • help analyze and assess basic underlying assumptions
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • ETHICAL THEORIES, PRINCIPLES AND FRAMEWORKS
      • help develop, justify and criticize arguments, decisions, recommendations, policies, etc.
      • help identify where arguments go wrong (your own and those of others) by exposing gaps, fallacies, inconsistencies, and/or unexpected consequences
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • OVERVIEW ON ETHICAL THEORIES
      • Utilitarianism
      • Deontology
      • Principlism
      • Virtue Ethics
      • Feminist Ethics
      • Casuistry
      • Religious Ethics (Islamic & Christian)
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • UTILITARIANISM Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • BASIC INSIGHTS OF UTILITARIANISM
      • The purpose of morality is to make the world a better place.
      • Morality is about producing good consequences, not having good intentions
      • We should do whatever will bring the most benefit (i.e., intrinsic value) to all of humanity.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • THE PURPOSE OF MORALITY
      • The utilitarian has a very simple answer to the question of why morality exists at all:
        • The purpose of morality is to guide people’s actions in such a way as to produce a better world.
      • Consequently, the emphasis in utilitarianism is on consequences , not intentions.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • FUNDAMENTAL IMPERATIVE
      • The fundamental imperative of utilitarianism is:
        • Always act in the way that will produce the greatest overall amount of good in the world.
        • The emphasis is clearly on consequences, not intentions.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • THE EMPHASIS ON THE OVERALL GOOD
      • We often speak of “utilitarian” solutions in a disparaging tone, but in fact utilitarianism is a demanding moral position that often asks us to put aside self-interest for the sake of the whole.
      • Utilitarianism is a morally demanding position for two reasons:
        • It always asks us to do the most , to maximize utility, not to do the minimum.
        • It asks us to set aside personal interest .
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • THE DREAM OF UTILITARIANISM: BRINGING SCIENTIFIC CERTAINTY TO ETHICS
      • Utilitarianism offers us a powerful vision of the moral life, one that promises to reduce or eliminate moral disagreement.
        • If we can agree that the purpose of morality is to make the world a better place; and
        • If we can scientifically assess various possible courses of action to determine which will have the greatest positive effect on the world; then
        • We can provide a scientific answer to the question of what we ought to do.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • INTRINSIC VALUE
      • Many things have instrumental value, that is, they have value as means to an end.
      • However, there must be some things which are not merely instrumental, but have value in themselves. This is what we call intrinsic value.
      • What has intrinsic value? Four principal candidates:
        • Pleasure
          • Jeremy Bentham
        • Happiness
          • John Stuart Mill
        • Ideals
          • G. E. Moore
        • Preferences
          • Kenneth Arrow
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • ACT AND RULE UTILITARIANISM
      • Act utilitarianism
        • Looks at the consequences of each individual act and calculate utility each time the act is performed.
      • Rule utilitarianism
        • Looks at the consequences of having everyone follow a particular rule and calculates the overall utility of accepting or rejecting the rule.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • AN EXAMPLE
      • Imagine the following scenario. A prominent and much-loved leader has been rushed to the hospital, grievously wounded by an assassin’s bullet. He needs a heart and lung transplant immediately to survive. No suitable donors are available, but there is a homeless person in the emergency room who is being kept alive on a respirator, who probably has only a few days to live, and who is a perfect donor. Without the transplant, the leader will die; the homeless person will die in a few days anyway. Security at the hospital is very well controlled. The transplant team could hasten the death of the homeless person and carry out the transplant without the public ever knowing that they killed the homeless person for his organs. What should they do?
        • For rule utilitarians , this is an easy choice. No one could approve a general rule that lets hospitals kill patients for their organs when they are going to die anyway. The consequences of adopting such a general rule would be highly negative and would certainly undermine public trust in the medical establishment.
        • For act utilitarians , the situation is more complex. If secrecy were guaranteed, the overall consequences might be such that in this particular instance greater utility is produced by hastening the death of the homeless person and using his organs for the transplant.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • CRITICISMS OF UTILITARIANISM Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
      • Responsibility
      • Integrity
      • Intentions
      • Moral Luck
      • Who does the calculating?
      • Who is included?
  • DEONTOLOGY Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • THE ETHICS OF DUTY More than any other philosopher, Kant emphasized the way in which the moral life was centered on duty. Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • DEONTOLOGICAL ETHICS (DUTY-BASED ETHICS)
      • Some say consequences are morally irrelevant
      • Others say consequences are morally relevant but by themselves don’t determine the ethical nature of action
      • Focus: rights and duties; permissible vs. mandatory actions
      • Key questions: Are we treating cases similar in all morally relevant respects alike? Are we respecting persons?
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • UNIVERSALIZABILITY AND THE CATEGORICAL IMPERATIVE
    • Central insight:
      • What is fair for one is fair for all
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • LIVING BY RULES
      • Most of us live by rules much of the time. Some of these are what Kant called Categorical Imperatives—unconditional commands that are binding on everyone at all times.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • TYPES OF IMPERATIVES
      • Hypothetical Imperative:
        • “ If you want to drive to Medani from Khartoum, take the Medani ‘highway’.”
        • Structure: if…then…
      • Categorical Imperative
        • “ Always tell the truth”
        • Unconditional, applicable at all times
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • MAXIMS
      • Maxims, according to Kant, are subjective rules that guide action.
        • Relevant Act Description
        • Sufficient Generality
      • All actions have maxims, such as,
        • Never lie to your friends.
        • Never act in a way that would make your parents ashamed of you.
        • Always watch out for number one.
        • It’s ok to cheat if you need to.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • CATEGORICAL IMPERATIVES:
      • Universality:
      • “ Always act in such a way that the maxim of your action can be willed as a universal law of humanity.”
      • Respect
      • “ Always treat humanity, whether in yourself or in other people, as an end in itself and never as a mere means.”
    • --Immanuel Kant
      • Publicity:
      • Always act in such a way that you would not be embarrassed to have your actions described on the front page of The New York Times.
    • --Probably not Bill Clinton
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • CATEGORICAL IMPERATIVE: Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • CATEGORICAL IMPERATIVES: ANOTHER EXAMPLE
      • “ I know the questions to ask. It’s the answers I’m after. And what about learning how to live? Isn’t that philosophy too? What’s yours?”
      • The reply had come easily but, she had thought, with honesty. “To get as much happiness as I can. Not to harm others. Not to whine. In that order.”
    • Adam Dalgliesh, in reply to Kate Miskin’s question
    • P. D. James, A Certain Justice
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • CLASSROOM EXERCISES
      • Most of us live by rules, obedience to which we take as a duty.
        • What are the most important rules you live by?
        • What were the most important rules in your family?
        • What rules have you rejected as you have gotten older?
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • WHERE KANT MISSED THE MARK
      • The Neglect of Moral Integration
        • The person of duty can have deep and conflicting inclinations and this does not decrease moral worth—indeed, it seems to increase it in Kant’s eyes.
      • The Role of Emotions
        • For Kant, the emotions are always suspect because they are fickle and causally determined and passive.
      • The Place of Consequences in the Moral Life
        • In order to protect the moral life from the vicissitude of moral luck, Kant held a very strong position that refused to attach moral blame to individuals who were acting with good will, even though some indirect bad consequences could be forseen.
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • PRINCIPLISM
    • Framework includes four clusters of moral principles for identifying and reflecting on moral problems:
      • Respect for autonomy (self-determination or self-governance)
      • Promote non-maleficence (avoiding harm)
      • Promote beneficence ( doing good)
      • Promote justice (treat people and groups fairly, including distributing resources fairly)
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • VIRTUE-BASED ETHICS
      • Emphasizes moral character—not just moral action
      • Focus: not simply to act morally
    • but to be moral
      • Key questions:
        • what kind of life should I live?
        • what kind of person should I be?
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • FEMINIST ETHICS
      • oppression (of all people, in all its forms) is morally and politically unjust and must be addressed
      • social justice requires distributive justice plus fair relationships among social groups
      • the self is essentially a “self-in-relation”
      • autonomy should be a relational (rather than an individualistic) notion
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • CASUISTRY (CASE-BASED REASONING)
      • “ bottom-up approach”
      • case comparison/analogy used toward ethical consensus
      • practical judgment in particular cases with appeal to precedent (“paradigm cases”) where possible
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010
  • CASUISTRY: ASSESSMENT
    • Strengths:
      • contextual approach recognizes each case is unique
    • Limitations:
      • conflicting case analogies, judgments, interpretations
      • facts of case themselves can’t yield ethical judgments
      • appeal to precedent assumes we got it right in the past—how do we know?
      • no method to prevent biased account of case or one that neglects relevant features
      • “ lacks critical distance from cultural blindness, rash analogy, and mere popular opinion” (B&C 395)
    Ghaiath Ethics in Public Health (JPCMFM) Jan.2010