David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Bioethics 24 (8):431-438 (2010)
Background: Biomedical science is producing an avalanche of data about risk factors, often with a small predictive value, associated with a broad diversity of diseases. Prevention and screening are increasingly moving from public health into the clinic. Therefore, the question of which risk factors to investigate and disclose in the individual patient, becomes ethically increasingly urgent. In line with Wilson and Jungner's public health-related 10 principles for screening, it seems crucial to distinguish important from unimportant health risks.Aim: to explore the ways in which clinicians distinguish important from unimportant health risks.Methods: We interviewed 36 respondents (gastroenterologists and gynaecologists/obstetrics) in 5 focus group interviews and 15 open in-depth interviews on their interpretation of what makes a health risk important.Results: Physicians primarily interpreted importance as the severity of the possible harm, less often its probability. Possibilities of prevention or reassurance strongly influenced their judgment on importance.Discussion: It is not likely that interpreting ‘important’ as ‘severe’ will help in differentiating meaningful from meaningless risk knowledge. A more fundamental change in our ways of dealing with risk may be called for. We discuss existing literature on resilience as an alternative way to deal with risk. Balancing prevention and risk reduction with resilience could be a fruitful direction
|Keywords||resilience risk detection prevention risk|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Gwendolyn Roberts Majette (2011). PPACA and Public Health: Creating a Framework to Focus on Prevention and Wellness and Improve the Public's Health. Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics 39 (3):366-379.
John Kadvany (1997). Varieties of Risk Representations. Journal of Social Philosophy 28 (3):123-143.
A. Vilhelmsson, T. Svensson & A. Meeuwisse (2011). Mental Ill Health, Public Health and Medicalization. Public Health Ethics 4 (3):207-217.
Barbara Osimani (2010). Pharmaceutical Risk Communication: Sources of Uncertainty and Legal Tools of Uncertainty Management. Health Risk and Society 12 (5):453-69.
Mark Greene & Suzanne M. Smith (2008). Consenting to Uncertainty: Challenges for Informed Consent to Disease Screening—a Case Study. [REVIEW] Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 29 (6):371-386.
Hanne Hollnagel (2000). From Risk Factors to Health Resources in Medical Practice. Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 3 (3):255-262.
Sven Ove Hansson (2004). Weighing Risks and Benefits. Topoi 23 (2):145-152.
Thomas Kenner & Karl P. Pfeiffer (1986). The Risk Concept in Medicine — Statistical and Epidemiological Aspects: A Case Report for Applied Mathematics in Cardiology. Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 7 (3).
Helen L. Treanor (2000). Health Risks and the Health Care Professional. Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 3 (3):251-254.
Added to index2009-02-17
Total downloads10 ( #227,548 of 1,724,882 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #349,126 of 1,724,882 )
How can I increase my downloads?