The Profit Motive in Medicine
Brock, Dan W.
Buchanan, Allen E.
Journal of Medicine and Philosophy. 1987 Feb; 12(1): 1-35.
The ethical implications of the growth of for-profit health care institutions are complex. Two major moral criticisms of for-profit medicine are analyzed. The first claim is that for-profit health care institutions fail to fulfill their obligations to do their fair share in providing health care to the poor and so exacerbate the problem of access to health care. The second claim is that profit seeking in medicine will damage the physician-patient relationship, creating conflicts of interest that will diminish the quality of care and erode patients' trust in their physicians and the public's trust in the medical profession. The authors conclude that while the continued expansion of for-profit health care may exacerbate in some respects problems of access, trust, and conflicts of interest, it is a mistake to consider these problems as unique to for-profit health care; they are problems for not-for-profit health care as well....
Altruism; Access to Health Care; Conflict of Interest; Costs and Benefits; Economics; Ethics; Federal Government; Financial Support; Government; Government Regulation; Health; Health Care; Hospitals; Indigents; Institutional Ethics; Justice; Medicine; Moral Obligations; Obligations of Society; Obligations to Society; Patients; Physicians; Proprietary Hospitals; Regulation; Remuneration; Trust;