Building on the best-selling tradition of previous editions, Principles of Biomedical Ethics, Sixth Edition, provides a highly original, practical, and insightful guide to morality in the health professions. Acclaimed authors Tom L. Beauchamp and James F. Childress thoroughly develop and advocate for four principles that lie at the core of moral reasoning in health care: respect for autonomy, nonmaleficence, beneficence, and justice. Drawing from contemporary research - and integrating detailed case studies and vivid real-life examples and scenarios - they demonstrate how these prima facie principles can be expanded to apply to various conflicts and dilemmas, from how to deliver bad news to whether or not to withhold or withdraw life-sustaining treatments. Illuminating both theory and method throughout, Principles of Biomedical Ethics, Sixth Edition, considers what constitutes moral character and addresses the problem of moral status: what rights are due to people and animals, and when.It also examines the professional-patient relationship, surveys major philosophical theories - including utilitarianism, Kantianism, rights theory, and Communitarianism - and describes methods of moral justification in bioethics. Ideal for courses in biomedical ethics, bioethics, and health care ethics, the text is enhanced by hundreds of annotated citations and a substantial introduction that clarifies key terms and concepts.
Table of Contents
PART I. MORAL FOUNDATIONS; 1. MORAL NORMS; Normative and Nonnormative Ethics; The Common Morality as Universal Morality; Particular Moralities as Nonuniversal; Moral Dilemmas; A Framework of Moral Norms; Conflicting Moral Norms; 2. MORAL CHARACTER; Moral Virtues; Virtues in Professional Roles; The Virtue of Caring; Five Focal Virtues; Moral Virtues and Action Guides; Moral Ideals; Moral Excellence; 3. MORAL STATUS; The Problem of Moral Status; Theories of Moral Status; From Theories to Practical Guidelines; Vulnerable Populations; PART II. MORAL PRINCIPLES; 4. RESPECT FOR AUTONOMY; The Nature of Autonomy; The Capacity for Autonomous Choice; The Meaning and Justification of Informed Consent; Disclosure; Understanding; Voluntariness; A Framework of Standards for Surrogate Decision Making; 5. NONMALEFICENCE; The Concept of Nonmaleficence; Distinctions and Rules Governing Nontreatment; Optional Treatments and Obligatory Treatments; Killing and Letting Die; The Justification of Intentionally Arranged Deaths; Protecting Incompetent Patients; 6. BENEFICENCE; The Concept of Beneficence; Obligatory Beneficence and Ideal Beneficence; Paternalism: Conflicts Between Beneficence and Autonomy; Balancing Benefits, Costs, and Risks; The Value and Quality of Life; 7. JUSTICE; The Concept of Justice; Theories of Justice; Fair Opportunity and Unfair Discrimination; Vulnerability and Exploitation; National Health Policy and the Right to Health Care; Global Health Policy and the Right to Health; Allocating, Setting Priorities, and Rationing; 8. PROFESSIONAL-PATIENT RELATIONSHIPS; Veracity; Privacy; Confidentiality; Fidelity; The Dual Roles of Clinician and Investigator; PART III. THEORY AND METHOD; 9. MORAL THEORIES; Criteria for Theory Construction; Utilitarianism; Kantianism; Rights Theory; Communitarianism; Convergence of Theories; 10. METHOD AND MORAL JUSTIFICATION; Justification in Ethics; Top-Down Models: Theory and Application; Bottom-Up Models: Cases and Analogy; An Integrated Model Using Reflective Equilibrium; Common-Morality Theory; INDEX
"The new sixth edition of Principles of Biomedical Ethics is a welcome event. There is nothing else like it in the field of bioethics. It has easily become over the years the most used, most praised, and most distinguished book in the field. Each edition moves beyond the previous ones in important and nuanced ways. Beauchamp and Childress keep up with the ever-changing terrain of bioethics, and work hard to refine their own arguments. It gets better and better. One can hardly ask for more."--Daniel Callahan, Director, International Program, The Hastings Center"What is by far the best general book on bioethics has gotten even better. The new material on international justice and virtue ethics is especially valuable. Such a combination of accessibility and rigor is rarely attained."--Allen Buchanan, James B. Duke Professor of Philosophy and James B. Duke Professor of Public Policy Studies, Duke University"This sixth edition of Principles of Biomedical Ethics reaffirms its undisputed stature as a canonical text for the world's bioethicists. It maintains a standard of scholarship and clarity appealing to neophytes and seasoned scholars, to adherents and critics of its principled approach. It culls the new and the old with precision and adds a new chapter on moral status. Anyone hoping to stay current with the continuing evolution of bioethics must read this update."--Edmund D. Pellegrino, Chairman, President's Council on Bioethics"The contemporary field of bioethics is unimaginable, absent this text. Principles of Biomedical Ethics provided a paradigmatic approach that shaped the early character of bioethics. It continues to be a source of serious debate regarding the nature of morality and the significance of bioethics. No one can understand the field of bioethics apart from this volume."--H. Tristram Engelhardt, Jr., M.D., Professor, Rice University and Baylor College of Medicine"Principles of Biomedical Ethics has, over six successive
You can't tell a book by it's cover." Don't you believe it! Principles of Biomedical Ethics by Beauchamp and Childress is every bit as formidable as it's cover might suggest. That is not to say that the book is poorly written or inadequate in any way. It is just that this reviewer is a student, whose professor, at the end of the course confessed to the class the the text was indeed a demanding work requiring proportional effort on the part of the student. Granting that, it was the best of several texts he had examined.
After setting the stage, in chapter one with a discussion of approaches to ethics, the authors, in chapter two, deliniate in detail, eight classical ethical theories, which form the foundation of the study. Through liberal use of examples, the authors reveal that all theories have both weaknesses as well as strengths and that to rely on one theory to the exclusion of others is indeed a hightly questionable approach to ethical decision making.
In the subsequent six chapters, the authors continue with a wealth of case studies, elaborate on the importance of autonomy, privacy and dangers of paternalism; they discuss the elements of nonmaleficence and beneficence as essential elements in the Hippocratic oath. Distictions are made between killing and letting die. Arguments are made for and against the use of medically administered nutrition and hydration. Balancing prima facie norms to provide treatment and for truth telling are examined and the extenuating circumstances when these seemingly basic tenets may not be appropriate are discussed.
The authors have not dodged the knotty problems of availability of organs for transplantation, rationing of scarce treatments and health care resources, costs of health care or the concepts or theories of justice as they relate to health care. The appendix consists of ten case histories. There is a abundance of footnotes at the end of each chapter sufficient to satisfy the most rigorous student.
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