Authors
J. Paul Kelleher
University of Wisconsin, Madison
Abstract
This paper argues that societal duties of health promotion are underwritten (at least in large part) by a principle of beneficence. Further, this principle generates duties of justice that correlate with rights, not merely “imperfect” duties of charity or generosity. To support this argument, I draw on a useful distinction from bioethics and on a somewhat neglected approach to social obligation from political philosophy. The distinction is that between general and specific beneficence; and the approach from political philosophy has at times been called equality of concern. After clarifying the distinction and setting out the basis of the equality of concern view, I argue that the result is a justice-based principle of “specific” beneficence that should be reflected in a society’s health policy. I then draw on this account to criticize, refine, and extend some prominent health care policy proposals from the bioethics literature.
Keywords Health  health care  justice  beneficence
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DOI 10.1353/ken.2014.0004
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References found in this work BETA

What is the Point of Equality?Elizabeth Anderson - 1999 - Ethics 109 (2):287-337.
Health, Luck, and Justice.Shlomi Segall - 2009 - Princeton University Press.
Equality of What?Amartya Sen - 1987 - In John Rawls & Sterling M. McMurrin (eds.), Liberty, Equality, and Law: Selected Tanner Lectures on Moral Philosophy. University of Utah Press.

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Citations of this work BETA

Health Inequalities and Relational Egalitarianism.J. Paul Kelleher - 2016 - In Rebecca L. Walker Mara Buchbinder & Michele Rivkin-Fish (eds.), Understanding Health Inequalities and Justice: New Conversations across the Disciplines. University of North Carolina Press.

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