Journal of Medical Ethics 46 (7):419-420 (2020)

This July 2020 issue of JME introduces a new section, “COVID-19 Current Controversies,” which will be a recurring section in each issue for the foreseeable future. This issue reflects on some of the most pressing ethical issues that have arisen roughly 6 months into the pandemic. Kathleen Liddell and colleagues examine important legal considerations at play in ventilator allocation decisions raised by the pandemic.1 They point out that ethics-based triage protocols that argue from the principle of “saving the most lives” by withholding or withdrawing ventilators from certain patients could violate the law. Patients’ legal rights are not suspended during this crisis, they remind us. The mere action of ventilator removal may constitute battery without consent, for example. Moreover, there may be problems with “evidentiary weakness” in some of the prognostic models used to inform such decisions. And, decisions that are inconsistent, subjective, and/or discriminatory may be deemed illegal. Those developing policies need to consider and consult various areas of law including criminal law, human rights law, civil law, public and administrative law, law on decision-making for incapacitated adults, professional regulations, and derogations from current law. Liddell et al offer 10 concrete, legally informed recommendations for those developing triage-policies to consider. Michael Parker and colleagues take on the issue of contact tracing using mobile apps and point out that such apps can enable people to emerge more safely from lockdowns, which provides a strong autonomy-based argument in favour …
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1136/medethics-2020-106554
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 63,393
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Limits of Trust in Medical AI.Joshua James Hatherley - 2020 - Journal of Medical Ethics 46 (7):478-481.

View all 12 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Champions in the Age of COVID-19.Jake Wojtowicz & Alex Wolf-Root - 2021 - Sport, Ethics and Philosophy 15 (1):3-13.
How Philosophy Bears on Covid-19.Thaddeus Metz - 2020 - South African Journal of Science 116 (7/8):1.
Current Controversies in Values and Science. [REVIEW]Vincenzo Politi - 2017 - Metapsychology Online Reviews 21 (42):xx-yy.
Vietnam’s Low-Cost COVID-19 Strategy.Hong-Kong Nguyen - 2020 - Project Syndicate 2020 (4):1-6.
Chinese Bioethicists Speak Out on Covid‐19, and Others Follow.Susan Gilbert - 2020 - Hastings Center Report 50 (2):inside_front_cover-inside_front_.


Added to PP index

Total views
13 ( #744,404 of 2,448,960 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #443,144 of 2,448,960 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes