Biomedical Ethics Addresses Difficult Issues about Health

By Kilpatrick, Carol | THE JOURNAL RECORD, July 25, 1990 | Go to article overview

Biomedical Ethics Addresses Difficult Issues about Health


Kilpatrick, Carol, THE JOURNAL RECORD


Numerous advances in medical research, education and patient care are being made in Oklahoma. This column will introduce you to some of the programs that will make it possible for us to live longer, healthier lives.

But the ability to prolong life through medical technology can raise questions. Many people do not fear death, but fear not being allowed to die. Biomedical ethics is a process that helps physicians, patients and their families make these difficult decisions.

The Supreme Court decision in the Cruzan case determined that an individual has a right to refuse treatment if that desire is made known. But Nancy Cruzan could not articulate the desire to be taken off life support and there was not clear and convincing proof that she wanted to die.

"I think it was, as decisions go, pretty good," said Dr. Richard Wright, director of the University of Oklahoma Biomedical and Health Care Ethics Program. "It fully reaffirmed an individual's right to refuse medical treatment regardless of anything else. And it made it possible for an incompetent person to have that right exercised on their behalf, provided that the desire can be documented.

"The problem with the Cruzan case was that the court decided Nancy Cruzan had not made her wishes well enough known. But it could have been a lot worse. They could have said you can't do that.

"The problem is that it is inappropriate for legislators and the legal system to be making decisions on these kinds of cases. By allowing the courts to intervene, we get people who know nothing about ethics, health care or the specific case making the decision. The state, through the courts and legislature, has no business interfering in that decision-making process," said Wright.

"The decision is a private matter between the patient, the physican and, if the patient is incompetent, the appropriate proxy decision maker for the patient. This is an ethical process, not a legal one."

Teaching biomedical and health care ethics at the University of Oklahoma helps health professionals understand the conflicts involved in ethical dilemmas to make the right decision. It involves teaching the process of decision making, recognizing ethical problems, recognizing different ways to deal with ethical problems and learning to understand different viewpoints.

The goal of the program is to integrate the instruction of ethics into the curriculum of the seven colleges of the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, which covers multiple dimensions of the health care community. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Biomedical Ethics Addresses Difficult Issues about Health
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.