The scope of moral responsibility due to therapeutic actions

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3 Scopus citations


Besides utilitarianism, there are different ways to understand Medicine and its role. The opinion of the author is that the pursuit of mankind welfare is not the role of physicians and that their responsibility is not referred to the world. On the contrary, their humble mission is to cure or mitigate pain through therapeutic actions. Any other way of proceeding means that the medical action is becoming orchestrated, destroying the fundamental value of patient physician relationship. This article intends to demonstrate the insufficiency of the Aristotelian idea of technique applied to medicine and that, on the other hand, the modern ideal of a principle free science does not account for the complexity of medical practice, mainly in the field of Psychiatry. Finally the author wonders if the moral convictions of physicians may play a role in the treatment of specific diseases caused by morally inadequate behaviors.
Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)989-995
Number of pages7
JournalRevista Medica de Chile
Issue number8
StatePublished - 1 Aug 1999


  • Behavioral medicine
  • Ethics, medical, Morals
  • Psychiatry


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