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To Fix or to HealPatient Care, Public Health, and the Limits of Biomedicine$
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Joseph E. Davis and Ana Marta Gonzalez

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781479878246

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479878246.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM NYU Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.nyu.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of NYU Press Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NYSO for personal use.date: 24 January 2022

Bioethics and Medicalization

Bioethics and Medicalization

(p.241) 9 Bioethics and Medicalization
To Fix or to Heal

John H. Evans

NYU Press

Despite critique, medicalization continues unabated. One part of the explanation is that while many resources have been spent on developing the field of public bioethics as a “watchdog” of medicine and science, public bioethics as it has developed is largely incapable of offering an effective critique of medicalization. This is clear from the fact that while bioethics is capturing tasks from medical sociology one by one, one topic that remains the province of medical sociologists and not bioethicists is medicalization. Public bioethics has become a subordinate profession to science and medicine, and its dominant form of ethical argumentation is the same as that which would be used by science and medicine. Bioethics then cannot discourage medicalization. For bioethics to contribute to a critique of medicalization and reductionism, public bioethics must be severed from science and medicine.

Keywords:   medicalization, institutional capture, professional jurisdiction, bioethics, history of bioethics, principlism

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