The Doctor's Master
Levinsky, Norman G.
New England Journal of Medicine. 1984 Dec 13; 311(24): 1573-1575.
The author, a physician, states that doctors are under increasing pressure to factor social considerations, such as cost, into medical decisions. He argues that physicians are obligated to do all they can for their patients without regard to costs or other social needs. Decisions to choose the most economical means of delivering care or to discontinue life-prolonging treatment must be made solely with the best interests of the patient in mind. It is society, not doctors, that must decide if medical resources are to be rationed. Physicians, Levinsky concludes, must remain advocates for the health needs of their patients. (KIE abstract)