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The Natural Law Approach to Health Care Ethics

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In this paper, I am going to be explaining Natural Law and Healthcare. The question can be asked, do these two things go together within ethics and Christian value? We can determine how ethics has impeded healthcare and natural law. One thing that we should consider on this is the oath all doctors took, which is the oath not to prescribe deadly drugs to anybody who ask for them. We must consider how jurisdictions may have fallen short of prevailing this natural law approach.

In this paper I will try and approach these in two steps. The first part I will try moral and immoral Natural Law ethics, and how it relates to everyday life. I will apply the next section to healthcare ethics and discuss my opinions on healthcare and ethics, and how there are so many arguments in healthcare that can be looked at as moral or immoral.

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The Natural Law

Natural law is described as what is different between right and wrong, also determining how people perform ethically. Natural Law is reflected by the Golden Rule this rule means basically treat others as you want to be treated. This is something that our parents have tried to instale in us since we were born. This means that people are guided by their human nature to determine what laws should be created within knowing right from wrong and proceed to live their lives in obedience of the laws. There were two individuals who built up the idea of Natural Law, Aquinas and Aristotle. Aristotle was believed to be that Virtue ethics and Natural Law go together. He thinks that natural law is discoverable through human reason and can find out why things are the way they are and what purpose they serve. He also states that there is a distinction between two laws; one is conventional, and one is natural.

Conventional laws are created by humans and natural law is discovered by humans. Aquinas’ concept of Natural law is that it was established by means of God himself. “For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. Natural Law goes way back with Adam and Eve in the garden. When eve willingly took a bite of the apple and then turned to Adam and convinced him to take a bite as well. This is where knowing good from evil takes place. We can learn this in the bible from Genesis. I believe many individuals live by Natural law, simply because that is what seems to be the right thing to do. Everyone knows what is right and what is wrong, but unfortunately, not everyone abides by it.

The individuals that are out on the streets robbing businesses or killing people know that it is wrong, but believe they have a just reason. These individuals, typically do not have a justified reason, but unfortunately have chosen the wrong path in life. These individuals are usually punished by law, which is what should happen. If you commit the crime, you should be punished to the fullest extent, and I believe that goes along with Natural law, because you’re going against moral principles, and should know that it is wrong.

HealthCare

The term Healthcare has a larger use to ponder, not just what is indicated by medical attention, but also conditions that, even though not medical, yet take the chosen outcome on the health status of people. HealthCare Ethics is the field of real ethics that relates to the large array of ethical decision making. Within the bible there are many sayings about health and care. A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirt dries up the bones. This can be caused by not getting the news that you wanted to hear, and you are ready to give up. Health care ethics is the function of the basic standards to medical and healthcare choices. When looking at the words health there can be several meanings, but this can be listed as physical, mental, and wellbeing. In this field, everyone took what they called the oath of Hippocrates, which is to give the best treatment or advice within their ability. Unfortunately, some Doctors or nurses go too far and they end up hurting the people that they are trying to heal.

There was a Doctor in Virginia that was supplying a drug ring where people were traveling from several hours away, to just get a prescription for high powered drugs, which were typically narcotics. When the pharmacies around the area caught on, these people shifted to different states and pharmacies just to get the pills to sell out on the street. This doctor violated his oath to help others because his goal was for gain. I guess you can say that in this case the doctor was about the money and how much he could get from this operation. The Doctor knew from the start that what he was doing was wrong and unethical. Once he started, he seen how much money he was making and how much business he was gaining, and even if he questioned the ethical side of it, he let the money and so-called, “fame” take over. I read an article related to this case where an individual was defending the doctor. The gentleman stated that his mother stayed in severe pain, and no physicians wanted to treat her, and when the said Doctor offered to provide narcotics, to her, he was grateful. I understand that you want your mother or any of your family taken care of, and you don’t want to see them suffer. I can’t help but wonder if the woman’s son ever realized what the Doctor was doing was unethical. Unfortunately, he probably didn’t because the Doctor would act just like any other just to get the money and business. Also, this particular Doctor’s practice also didn’t accept any insurance plans. I believe they didn’t accept insurance, because the Doctor knew that prescribing all the different narcotics to individuals in different states would be questioned and more than likely, not paid by the insurance. The drug ring, or the “pill mill” that this Doctor was running even killed a lady because of the oxycodone and oxymorphone that was prescribed to her. Fortunately, the Doctor lost his medical license and was charged, and I believe, he should have been because he was going against every healthcare ethic there was. Once the charges were in place, a lot of individuals came forward and mentioned they never had to go through any kind of exams to get the medications, and that people literally lined up and camped out at his office just to get their hands on narcotics.

Medical ethics, which falls under healthcare can be described as micro ethics and macro ethics. Micro deals with issues as doctor-patient relationships and macro deals with the distribution of healthcare. Many can say that a doctor got there diagnoses wrong and the people ended up getting worse off, or even dying because of a missed symptom. I think that healthcare has it ups and downs, but I wonder why Narcan is free to the people that overdose just to do it again, but yet insulin that people cannot live without is over $600.00. It definitely makes you wonder how much it really costs to make these products.

Additionally, another healthcare issue that can be argued is vaping; does it help or hurt? With this, I think vaping is a better alternative because you are not getting all the chemicals from cigarettes. One can argue that there are many chemicals in vaping products. The only 4 chemicals in vaping is VG, which is vegetable glycerin and PG, which is propylene glycol, nicotine, and flavorings. Compared to cigarettes, which has many more chemicals, vaping seems to me like it is a better choice. Vaping has its advantages which is no tar, no carbon monoxide, no secondhand smoke, and best of all it doesn’t stink. Arguably, cigarettes have tar, Carbon Monoxide, you get that secondhand smoke, and it does stink. There are people everywhere that constantly complain about smokers, mainly because of the smell, so with vaping, you are going to prevent putting the smell of smoke in the air around others.

With vaping, you can get any nicotine level that you want, and they have full flavors. On another note, there has been a lot of recent arguments because of the news of deaths from people vaping, and the whole country went on a crazy raid to ban all Vape flavors products. After extensive research, the main cause of all the deaths related to this was the bad CBD cartridges loaded with unknown chemicals. It is just funny how many people and news outlets stopped reporting on vaping after the release of the cause. Everyone should buy from a well-known source for vaping products, not just someone off the streets trying to make some money. That is why I only buy from one company and they always review their products before offering, and they are always done on YouTube. So many companies have become involved with these products like the giant cigarette manufacturing such as Marlboro which has IQOS, which is a heat burn stick. This product is a heat based product, not a light and burn product. So, let’s ask this, I can buy 3 bottles of juice for the cost of a carton of cigarettes and the juice vaping liquid last just as long if not longer. Which would you choose? Furthermore, I do not get all those chemicals that are inside of a cigarette. Which one would you choose?

The Healthcare side of things is that many companies want you to quit smoking because it reduces their healthcare premiums. Also, with life insurance you are charged a high rate if you smoke. So many places will pay you to quit all together. A company that I worked for, if you stopped smoking all together, they would pay more of your insurance. Due to all these incentives, there are a lot of people that is trying to cheat the system by saying they didn’t smoke but still smoked elsewhere. Cheating the system is not going to get anyone anywhere. I don’t believe these people realize there are test that can be done to test nicotine levels in your system. I think in Japan or China, here recently said that they would offer nonsmokers more vacation time up to 6 days. This would equal up to the amount of time that smokers spent outside on smoke breaks. This part is immoral because these people get the same amount of break and lunch time as a smoker. I understand a lot of companies are wanting individuals to stop smoking, but some of the incentives are just immoral because there are individuals that are not going to quit smoking, no matter what the incentive is. Is vaping a better choice? I believe that is for you to decide.

Conclusion

Healthcare has so many forms to it, whether it is healthcare in a hospital setting, an office sitting, or behind the scenes of medicine. Whichever option that you take, it cannot be wrong. Healthcare is something that is needed for every individual and you can see that Healthcare can take care of you, or it can hurt you. Becoming a Doctor or any medical provider, you take an oath to help patients with pain and sickness. Unfortunately, some medical providers see that money can go along way and turn from good to evil, which in the end, comes back to bite them, and so many healthcare providers lose their license that they worked so hard for. I think that healthcare and natural law can go hand in hand because as a medical provider, you know the ethics of healthcare and what you should be doing to uphold the oath. Again, Natural law is inherent to human nature, and there is a right or wrong to every situation, and one chooses whether to do what is right, or what is wrong.

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