Academic journal article The Hastings Center Report

Preface

Academic journal article The Hastings Center Report

Preface

Article excerpt

In the 1960s, when the modern medical ethics movement began, it focused on resolving ethical dilemmas by clarifying, expanding, and codifying the values used by physicians to justify their actions and define their responsibilities. This focus on physician-centered actions and professional values shifted in the 1970s, as medical ethics was joined by bioethics, whose gaze largely was fixed on the extra-professional dimensions of ethics and used mainly to engage institutional, scientific, and social issues. As bioethics became the dominant form of health care ethics, both the scholarly exploration and the number of scholars devoting their work to the professional ethics of medicine declined--a fact brought home to the organizers of this Special Supplement as we sought to identify American participants for it.

This supplement presents the cross-cultural dialogue between Chinese and American scholars, held over four days in Beijing in May 1999 that explored comparatively the significance of professional values in medical practice, teaching, and research. Their reflections make clear that despite vastly different histories, China and the United States share many of the ethical values that define and order the medical life of physicians. …

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