Dealing with Conflicts of Interest: Is Virtue Ethics Tough Enough?
Although Virtue Ethics (VE) is an important approach to medical ethics, it may not be adequate for meeting the ever-increasing conflicts of interest in modern health care. There are several weaknesses in the approach: idealism, not able to be matched by all practitioners; cultural variations in professional values; and the effects of peer influences on values. But VE may be of some help, if it is backed up by tougher regulation and by a realization by doctors that they can find fulfilment (Eudaimonia) only if they put patient welfare ahead of their own material gain.
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