Medical Ethics in the Developing World: A Liberation Theology Perspective
Dos Anjos, Marcio Fabri
Journal of Medicine and Philosophy. 1996 Dec; 21(6): 629-637.
Standard medical ethical analyses typically focus on the physician/patient relationship, patient autonomy, and the clinical encounter. For Liberation Theology this amounts to neglecting the larger context of social injustice. Medicine is a social institution. Any medical ethics which purports to provide an ethics of medicine and medical practice must necessarily address the larger social issues of class structure, poverty and access to adequate health care. Liberation Theology provides a very specific perspective that draws on the needs of the poverty stricken, assesses the relationship among social classes, and focuses on societal conditions. Given such an analysis, medical ethics is reconfigured as concerned not only with clinical encounters but also with background cultural conditions and social justice.
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