Principlism, medical individualism, and health promotion in resource-poor countries: Can autonomy-based bioethics promote social justice and population health?
Creators: Azétsop, Jacquineau, Rennie, Stuart
- File Type: pdf | Filesize: 223.9 KB
- Date Added: 2012-08-23
- Date Created: 2010-01-18
Abstract Through its adoption of the biomedical model of disease which promotes medical individualism and its reliance on the individual-based anthropology, mainstream bioethics has predominantly focused on respect for autonomy in the clinical setting and respect for person in the research site, emphasizing self-determination and freedom of choice. However, the emphasis on the individual has often led to moral vacuum, exaggeration of human agency, and a thin (liberal?) conception of justice. Applied to resource-poor countries and communities within developed countries, autonomy-based bioethics fails to address the root causes of diseases and public health crises with which individuals or communities are confronted. A sociological explanation of disease causation is needed to broaden principles of biomedical ethics and provides a renewed understanding of disease, freedom, medical practice, patient-physician relationship, risk and benefit of research and treatment, research priorities, and health policy.