Thursday, September 16, 2010

Tuesday, 9/28 - The Ethics of Rationing

Update, 9/21:

Pranay recommends an article by Paul Farmer and Nicole Campos entitled "Rethinking Medical Ethics: A View from Below." The themes addressed dovetail quite nicely with Singer's "Famine, Affluence, and Morality," linked below.


Hello you,

To those of you who came to our first discussion meeting, thanks! You made it great. Next next week we'll be discussing a topic that expands on this week's conversation about the doctor, the patient, and those difficult end-of-life decisions: Rationing of care!

This topic approaches the issue with more of a policy edge, so we're expecting a bit more controversy this time around. Pranay and I will be facilitating. The main reading is an article by Peter Singer entitled, bluntly enough, "Why We Must Ration Health Care."

I will also include additional links for your reading pleasure.

For more work by Peter Singer, you can find more than you'll ever want to read here.  Two articles of particular note are "Famine, Affluence, and Morality," the essay which basically put him on the map of philosophical academia, and "The Animal Liberation Movement," which touches on what we talked about towards the end of today's discussion.

Here is an interview with Dr. Donald Berwick, the new Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, focusing on his thoughts regarding comparative effectiveness research and its relation to rationing.

For responses and rebuttals to Singer's perspective on rationing, see this article, "Barack Obama Will Ration Your Health Care" for a mainstream conservative take. Blogger John Greene directly responds to Singer's article in this post, again from a conservative standpoint.

For a decidedly libertarian viewpoint, see "The Market Does Not Ration Health Care," an article in Capitalism Magazine.

That should be plenty for now. If you have any suggestions for articles, discussion topics, or anything else, please contact me!


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