Conscientious refusal by physicians and pharmacists: Who is obligated to do what, and why?

Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 29 (3):187-200 (2008)

Abstract
Some medical services have long generated deep moral controversy within the medical profession as well as in broader society and have led to conscientious refusals by some physicians to provide those services to their patients. More recently, pharmacists in a number of states have refused on grounds of conscience to fill legal prescriptions for their customers. This paper assesses these controversies. First, I offer a brief account of the basis and limits of the claim to be free to act on one’s conscience. Second, I sketch an account of the basis of the medical and pharmacy professions’ responsibilities and the process by which they are specified and change over time. Third, I then set out and defend what I call the “conventional compromise” as a reasonable accommodation to conflicts between these professions’ responsibilities and the moral integrity of their individual members. Finally, I take up and reject the complicity objection to the conventional compromise. Put together, this provides my answer to the question posed in the title of my paper: “Conscientious refusal by physicians and pharmacists: who is obligated to do what, and why?”.
Keywords Conscience  Complicity  Ethics
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s11017-008-9076-y
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 39,645
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Political Liberalism.John Rawls - 1993 - Columbia University Press.
What is Conscience and Why is Respect for It so Important?Daniel P. Sulmasy - 2008 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 29 (3):135-149.
Conscientious Objection and Emergency Contraception.Robert F. Card - 2007 - American Journal of Bioethics 7 (6):8 – 14.
Conscientious Objection in Medicine.Mark R. Wicclair - 2000 - Bioethics 14 (3):205–227.

View all 10 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Conscientious Objection in Italy.F. Minerva - 2015 - Journal of Medical Ethics 41 (2):170-173.
When Should Conscientious Objection Be Accepted?M. Magelssen - 2012 - Journal of Medical Ethics 38 (1):18-21.
My Conscience May Be My Guide, but You May Not Need to Honor It.Hugh Lafollette - 2017 - Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 26 (1):44-58.
My Conscience May Be My Guide, but You May Not Need to Honor It.Hugh Lafollette - 2017 - Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 26 (1):44-58.

View all 32 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total views
152 ( #44,261 of 2,325,911 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #534,295 of 2,325,911 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature