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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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In Search of an Ethical Frame for the Provision of Health

In Search of an Ethical Frame for the Provision of Health

(p.284) 11 In Search of an Ethical Frame for the Provision of Health
To Fix or to Heal

Ana Marta González

NYU Press

The distinction between the healthy and the good, a major basis for ethical reflection, has become increasingly blurred in the past few decades. González seeks to reintroduce that distinction, and to explain the tendency to naturalize the good with reference to developments in nineteenth-century philosophy and science. She then argues that while this process of naturalization has been reinforced by the desire to avoid ethical controversies, it fails precisely in that effort. Ethical controversies always return in the end, and it is better to address them in explicitly ethical terms at the outset, before they erupt. Such controversies—such as the definition of proper care and the just distribution of health resources—can be resolved only to the extent that we develop a comprehensive notion of the human good, and its relation to the common (ethical) good.

Keywords:   Aristotle, ethical naturalism, pluralism and ethics, defining health, private and public goods, biomedical model, health care

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