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September 17, 1997

Bioethics: An Introduction to the History, Methods, and Practice

Author Affiliations

Wallingford, Pa

JAMA. 1997;278(11):951. doi:10.1001/jama.1997.03550110089047

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We live in a time when a quest for profits appears to have gained ascendancy over concern for social values. One result is a vastly inequitable healthcare system, in which millions of Americans are either uninsured or underinsured for health coverage. Our striking failure to provide adequate health care for all our people is cause for grave ethical concern.

Managed care is rapidly gaining prominence in the nation's.health care system. But the rapid influx of this cost-cutting mechanism into the health care system may seriously erode the quality of care and fail to ameliorate the glaring inequity affecting the health system.

Although the United States does not have universal health coverage, it is moving steadily in the direction of legally sanctioned assisted suicide. If the US Supreme Court bestows its legal blessing on assisted suicide, then US citizens will have a right to assisted suicide but not to adequate