What do you understand by bioethics? Critically discuss its principles and related issues. (200 Words)
Bio-ethics has been developing since last twenty years to describe the investigation and a study of ways in which decisions in medicine and science touch upon our health and lives and upon our society and environment. If ethics is concerned with moral right and wrong in a society then bio-ethics is the application of ethics in the field of medicine and healthcare concerned with questions about
- Basic human values such as the rights to life [euthanasia whether be allowed] and health; and the rightness or wrongness of certain developments
- In healthcare institutions [accessibility to healthcare],
- Life technology [cloning, stem cells],
- Medicine [contraception],
- Reproduction [surrogacy, abortion],
- The health professions [consent of patient, autonomy of decision, bodily integrity]
- About society’s responsibility for the life and health of its members [health insurance-health care cess, isolation of disease affected ,responsibility towards elderly and frail].
- Implications of distributive justice [pricing of life saving medicines, accessibility of Generic drugs, organ donation and transplantation], and
- Issues in global healthcare [Human Genome].
Bioethicists explore even deeper issues such as the meaning of life and death, pain and suffering, and rights and responsibilities. It is an interdisciplinary dialogue with unique merit of applying the foundational disciplines of philosophy and theology, and incorporating perspectives from other disciplines- sociology, medicine, nursing, anthropology, and law.
Though the discipline started with ethical issues only regarding medicines, with time it has grown into a full-fledged discipline resolving and balancing complex relation between human life and scientific advancement paving way towards a prominent force in legislation and public policy, and in other practical applications of theoretical principles.