Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 13 (4):433-443 (1988)

Robert Veatch has claimed that virtue theory is not only irrelevant but potentially dangerous in medical ethics. I argue that virtue is a far more prominent factor in contemporary medical practice than Veatch admits. Even if ‘stranger medicine’ is taken as the norm, proper conduct on the part of physicians depends on certain character traits in order to be maintained consistently over a long period of time and in situations which run counter to the physician's own interests. Right conduct, which Veatch argues is the central moral issue in the physician-patient relationship, is intertwined with certain virtues. Moreover, the virtue of integrity and the concept of a unified lifenarrative are especially useful in analyzing an important factor missing in modern medicine. And since medicine relies necessarily on some concept of human flourishing I argue that virtue theory can play a central role in helping to determine the goals of medical practice. Keywords: virtue, right conduct, character, competence, life-narrative, specialization, human flourishing CiteULike Connotea What's this?
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1093/jmp/13.4.433
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: 71,489
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Can Illness Be Edifying?Ian James Kidd - 2012 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 55 (5):496-520.
Can Doctors Maintain Good Character? An Examination of Physician Lives.Saba Fatima - 2016 - Journal of Medical Humanities 37 (4):419-433.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles


Added to PP index

Total views
34 ( #337,586 of 2,520,806 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #405,623 of 2,520,806 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes