Ethics Consultation: A Dangerous, Antidemocratic Charlatanry?
Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics. 1993 Fall; 2(4): 438-442.
Giles Scofield's argument indicates ethics consultants may need to better clarify what in fact they are and what they are not doing, claiming, and striving for. But we must not step back too far. We must neither engage in putting in envious professional claims for exclusive rights in the area of difficult and momentous decisions in healthcare nor get stuck in discussing normative ethics at the level of metaphysics, ontology, and dogmatics (as has happened in Germany for decades). We must not do so especially in view of the achievements of ethics consultation and the growing demand for it by all parties involved, conceded even by sceptics. Ethics consultation, according to Scofield, appears to be dangerous....Let us look more closely at the logic of the argument by discussing the presumed "antidemocratic" nature. The "new tyranny" of thoughts, and the "proper" role of bioethics consultation. Some considerations about the possibility of ethics expertise shall be left for the end.
Autonomy; Bioethics; Communication; Competence; Consultation; Decision Making; Democracy; Education; Ethicist's Role; Ethicists; Ethics; Ethics Committees; Ethics Consultation; Interdisciplinary Communication; Metaphysics; Nature; Normative Ethics; Professional Competence; Rights; Social Dominance; Technical Expertise;
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Scofield, Giles R. (1995)If the responses to my article on the professionalization of ethics consultation prove anything, it is not that I missed the mark, but that I struck close to home; too close for the comfort of some. Here I respond, in kind, ...