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Bioethics Seminar: How should we constrain physicians’ discretionary space to ensure good medicine?

Public, All university
Event type
Open seminar
Bioethics Centre

Daniel Sulmasy has argued that positions that rule out conscientious objection in medicine leave physicians with no discretionary space to exercise professional judgment. He claims, rightly in my view, that the quality of public healthcare would be undermined if physicians could not exercise professional judgment. His response is to argue for a discretionary space only loosely constrained by a Lockean view of tolerance.

First, I show that Sulmasy is attacking a strawman; positions that proscribe conscientious objections can do so by narrowing, but not eliminating, discretionary space. Second, I argue that, a narrower discretionary space constrained by laws and professional ideals will result in better medicine than the wider discretionary space that Sulmasy promotes.

Speaker: Doug McConnell, Post-doctoral Research Fellow, Charles Stuart University.




64 3 471 6120

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