Background and Resources

Subtopic 1: Ethics and Values

Activity 1.1

Activity 1.2

Activity 1.3

Subtopic 2: Bioethical Problems Identification

Activity 2.1

Activity 2.2

Activity 2.3

Subtopic 3: Methods and Strategies for Decision-Making

Activity 3.1

Activity 3.2

Activity 3.3

Module Summary

Developer Bio

User Evaluation Form

Subtopic 2:
Bio-ethical Problems Identification

Bio-ethical problems are matters of public concern that involve either biological research, or the use of that research in meeting the demand for solutions to problems that pose a threat to a society or culture's well-being. Because the term "well-being" is so broad that it can include issues that have little, or nothing to do with ethics, this subtopic and its associated activities focus on a single public health issue. That issue is how to decide what to do with public health programs when available resources are cut to the point of endangering the lives of persons who depend on receiving the benefits of such programs.  

The activities of this subtopic introduce students to an actual issue confronting public health providers that involves questions of life and death decision-making, as well as questions that have little or nothing to do with ethical values. Activity 2.1 introduces the issue of ADAP funding and eligibility in a way that allows students the opportunity to sort through the many questions involved in order to arrive at a clearer understanding of how ethical issues are easily displaced, or mistaken for concerns that have a non-ethical basis in value. Activity 2.2 raises the question of how the relation between research and drugs impacts public health. Activity 2.3 then considers the philosophical issues that emerge in such cases.