Caregiver burden and the medical ethos

Caregiver burden and the medical ethos Are physicians sometimes morally required to ease caregiver burden? In our paper we defend an affirmative answer to this question. First, we examine the well-established principle that medical care should be centered on the patient. We argue that although this principle seems to give physicians some leeway to lessen caregivers' suffering, it is very restrictive when spelled out precisely. Based on a critical analysis of existing cases for transcending patient-centeredness we then go on to argue that the medical ethos should indeed contain a rule requiring physicians to alleviate caregiver burden under certain circumstances. Finally, we apply our findings to deep brain stimulation (DBS) for Parkinson's disease. We present empirical data from a recent study of DBS indicating that spousal caregivers of Parkinson patients treated with DBS are sometimes deeply troubled by the effects of the therapy and discuss what moral obligations the treating physicians may have in such cases. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png "Medicine, Health Care & Philosophy" Springer Journals

Caregiver burden and the medical ethos

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Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Copyright
Copyright © 2017 by Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht
Subject
Philosophy; Ethics; Medical Law; Theory of Medicine/Bioethics; Philosophy of Medicine; Philosophy of Biology
ISSN
1386-7423
eISSN
1572-8633
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11019-017-9757-2
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Are physicians sometimes morally required to ease caregiver burden? In our paper we defend an affirmative answer to this question. First, we examine the well-established principle that medical care should be centered on the patient. We argue that although this principle seems to give physicians some leeway to lessen caregivers' suffering, it is very restrictive when spelled out precisely. Based on a critical analysis of existing cases for transcending patient-centeredness we then go on to argue that the medical ethos should indeed contain a rule requiring physicians to alleviate caregiver burden under certain circumstances. Finally, we apply our findings to deep brain stimulation (DBS) for Parkinson's disease. We present empirical data from a recent study of DBS indicating that spousal caregivers of Parkinson patients treated with DBS are sometimes deeply troubled by the effects of the therapy and discuss what moral obligations the treating physicians may have in such cases.

Journal

"Medicine, Health Care & Philosophy"Springer Journals

Published: Feb 15, 2017

References

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