The Choice Between People: `common Sense' Morality, and Doctors
Kamm, Frances Myrna
Bioethics. 1987 Jul; 1(3): 255-271.
Kamm is concerned with explaining how "common sense" morality might be used in deciding about the distribution of scarce medical resources. Drawing an analogy between redirection of possible harms or threats and the allocation of health resources, she first explores how an ordinary moral agent, not a physician, might act. Using what Kamm calls the principle of irrelevant utilities (PIU), a moral agent might decide between contestants for a particular good based on "sobjectivism" (Sob), the author's term for a combination of the objective and subjective points of view. Kamm explores decision making using three versions of Sob that weigh interests and rights, equivalences, and aggregation of costs (losses). She concludes that, while ordinary moral agents functioning as social agents may act according to objective aggregated costs, physicians should be concerned with equivalents and individuals when allocating resources. (KIE abstract)
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