Public health ethics: Mapping the terrain

James F. Childress, Ruth R. Faden, Ruth D. Gaare, Lawrence O. Gostin, Jeffrey Kahn, Richard J. Bonnie, Nancy E. Kass, Anna C. Mastroianni, Jonathan D. Moreno, Phillip Nieburg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

470 Scopus citations


This paper provides a rough conceptual map of the terrain of public health ethics. It first defines public health and identifies several "general moral considerations" that variously support and constrain the pursuit of public health. It then sketches a framework for resolving conflicts among these considerations, with particular attention to screening programs. Finally, it examines areas of overlap and tension between public health and paternalism, and between public health and human rights.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)170-178
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Law, Medicine and Ethics
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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