Looking Ahead: Addressing Ethical Challenges in Public Health Practice

Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics 35 (4):657-667 (2007)
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In recent years, scholars have begun to lay the groundwork to justify a distinct application of ethics to the field of public health. They have highlighted important features that differentiate public health ethics from bioethics, especially public health’s emphasis on population health rather than issues of individual health. Articulations of public health ethics also tend to emphasize the role of social justice compared to the predominance of autonomy in the bioethical literature. Now that the field of public health ethics is developing a unique focus and a language of its own, including a code of ethics disseminated by the American Public Health Association, the future of public health ethics may well be global health ethics, focusing on issues of global justice. As public health ethics evolves from its nascent stage of reflection to a place of action and application in the national and global arenas, two interrelated developments will need to occur: public health professionals, including practitioners, policymakers, and scholars, will need a richer understanding of the ethical challenges practitioners face on a daily basis and scholars will need to develop useful tools that practitioners may employ for identifying and tackling these ethical challenges.



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References found in this work

Principles of biomedical ethics.Tom L. Beauchamp - 1989 - New York: Oxford University Press. Edited by James F. Childress.
Justice, health, and healthcare.Norman Daniels - 2001 - American Journal of Bioethics 1 (2):2 – 16.
Deliberating about Bioethics.Amy Gutmann & Dennis Thompson - 1997 - Hastings Center Report 27 (3):38-41.

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