Shouldn’t Rights for Medical Care Be Proclaimed Universal?
Read what Vancouver psychotherapist Isabella Mori wrote on her Change Therapy blog regarding a recent publication of a bill of rights, part of the World Wide Charter for ACTION on Eating Disorders sponsored by the Academy for Eating Disorders. After reading the document that defines the rights applying to those patients and caregivers of those patients with eating disorders, I responded to Isabella’s blog with the following. Would any of my visitors disagree with my analysis? ..Maurice.
Maurice Bernstein, M.D. Says:
January 1st, 2007 at 11:34 am
Though I have no doubt that much could be improved in the clinical and social management of eating disorders, I wonder if it is necessary to isolate the particular entity of eating disorders and setting really non-specific rights to those who suffer with this pathology. I didn’t see anything in the Bill that couldn’t be applied and should be applied to a whole host of medical conditions including simply the overall ethical practice of medicine by physicians, other healthcare workers and society in general. I feel the health care system should attempt to provide ethical treatment to all classes of illnesses, including those bearing major psychologic components.
The problem of selecting groups to champion rights is to ignore the entire picture of medical care. An analogy would be what is happening in the bioethics community. There is much discussion amongst ethicists about individual bedside issues such as when to terminate life support or what to advise regarding a brain dead pregnant woman but containing a live pre-mature fetus. But where is the widespread discussion and emphatic ethical education of the politicians and public about the inadequate access to medical care for all peoples in the United States but also in countries throughout the world? Rights to proper medical management should be available to all groups (that’s the ethical principle of justice) and not just to those with eating disorders. ..Maurice.