Women in Clinical Studies: A Feminist View

Susan Sherwin
Dalhousie University
There is significant evidence that the health needs of women and minorities have been neglected by a medical research community whose agendas and protocols tend to focus on more advantaged segments of society. In response, the National Institutes of Health and Food and Drug Administration in the United States have recently issued new policies aimed at increasing the utilization of women in clinical studies. As well, the U.S. Congress passed the NIH Revitalization Act of 1993, which specifically mandates increased inclusion of women and racial and ethnic groups in clinical studies. On the face of it, such gender and race-specific policies would appear to be morally problematic because traditionally ethics opposes the use of sex or race as legitimate criteria for distributions of benefits or burdens in social policies. Hence, these policies pose some significant moral questions. Feminist ethics provides us with a framework for evaluating such policies because of its readiness to recognize that socially and politically significant factors such as sex and race are morally relevant in setting public policy. Of course, feminist ethics does not simply endorse all appeals to sex and race but only the policies in which attention to such factors will contribute to social justice. In this essay, I Identify some of the Important ethical questions that a feminist ethics perspective raises about research policies devised to promote the Inclusion of women in clinical studies
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DOI 10.1017/s0963180100005417
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References found in this work BETA

Wanted.Rebecca Dresser - 1992 - Hastings Center Report 22 (1):24-29.
Wanted Single, White Male for Medical Research.Rebecca Dresser - 1992 - Hastings Center Report 22 (1):24.

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Whatever Happened to Human Experimentation?Carl Elliott - 2016 - Hastings Center Report 46 (1):8-11.

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