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Health and Social Justice$
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Jennifer Prah Ruger

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199559978

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199559978.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 29 November 2021

Approaches to Medical and Public Health Ethics

Approaches to Medical and Public Health Ethics

(p.19) 1 Approaches to Medical and Public Health Ethics
Health and Social Justice

Jennifer Prah Ruger (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter critically reviews the existing frameworks in health ethics, policy and law and frames the author's ideas as a solution to a perplexing problem: the inability of current frameworks to provide adequate health promotion and protection and to solve health-related problems in the real world. These approaches include welfare economics and utilitarianism, communitarianism and liberal communitarianism, egalitarianism (encompassing applications of Rawls's Theory of Justice, Fair Equality of Opportunity and other elements), libertarianism and market based approaches (where the government's role is to protect individual rights, particularly property rights, but not to guarantee a right to health) and democratic procedures. It discusses the deficiencies associated with using these approaches in a theory of health and social justice, drawing on examples such as the Oregon Medicaid experiment. The chapter emphasizes the need for a new integrative approach —— the health capability paradigm —— that establishes health capability and a right to health, guides collective choice and integrates consequentialist and proceduralist aims.

Keywords:   health capability, utilitarianism, egalitarianism, John Rawls, Fair Equality of Opportunity, communitarianism, libertarianism, democratic procedures, Oregon Medicaid Experiment

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