Readings in Health Care Ethics – Second Edition
  • Publication Date: March 14, 2012
  • ISBN: 9781554810383 / 1554810388
  • 680 pages; 7" x 9"

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Availability: Worldwide

Readings in Health Care Ethics – Second Edition

  • Publication Date: March 14, 2012
  • ISBN: 9781554810383 / 1554810388
  • 680 pages; 7" x 9"

This book focuses on Canadian health care ethics; if you’re looking for a health care ethics text with an American focus, you might want to consider Bioethics in Context or Bioethics: Legal and Clinical Case Studies.

Readings in Health Care Ethics provides a wide-ranging selection of important and engaging contributions to the field of health care ethics. The second edition adds a chapter on health care in Canada, and the introduction has been expanded to include discussion of a new direction in feminist naturalized ethics. The book presupposes no prior knowledge, only an interest in the bioethical issues that are shaping our world.

Readings in Health Care Ethics can be used on its own, or packaged with The Ethics of Pandemics for an additional $10, or with Well and Good for a discounted price. Please contact for more information.


“This updated text provides just the right balance of foundational readings in health care ethics and contemporary articles that address new problems in the field. Gedge and Waluchow provide an excellent introductory chapter to the text, offering students some solid theoretical tools to address ethical issues in health care. This text is sure to become essential reading, especially for Canadian students who are being introduced to the field of health care ethics.” — Jennifer Parks, Loyola University Chicago

“Both in their choice of topics and in their choice of readings, Professors Gedge and Waluchow have shown great sensitivity to the diversity and complexity of issues in health care. Particularly useful is their inclusion of some very important Supreme Court of Canada rulings: reflection on the role of such rulings is essential to understanding the social realities of decision making in health contexts. Noteworthy also are their intelligently nuanced comments on what philosophical ethics and philosophy more generally can contribute to our understanding of the issues addressed. I will definitely be using this collection the next time I teach bioethics.” — John Baker, University of Calgary

Wilfrid J. Waluchow and Elisabeth Gedge, “Ethical Resources for Decision-Making”

Web Links

  1. Ezekiel J. Emanuel and Linda L. Emanuel, “Four Models of the Physician-Patient Relationship”
  2. Susan Sherwin, “A Relational Approach to Autonomy in Health Care”
  3. John E. Thomas, “The Physician as Therapist and Investigator”
  4. Ellen W. Bernal, “The Nurse as Patient Advocate”
  5. Kenneth Kipnis, “A Defense of Unqualified Medical Confidentiality”
  6. Smith v. Jones [1999] (Case Summary by C. Morano)
  7. Carl Elliott, “Should Journals Publish Industry-Funded Bioethics Articles?”

Web Links

  1. Michael Stingl, “Equality and Efficiency as Basic Social Values”
  2. Chaoulli v. The Attorney General of Quebec and the Attorney General of Canada [2005] (Case Summary by C. Morano)
  3. Lawrie McFarlane, “Supreme Court Slaps For-Sale Sign on Medicare”
  4. Marcia Angell, “Privatizing Health Care Is Not the Answer: Lessons from the United States”

Web Link

  1. James F. Drane, “Competency to Give an Informed Consent: A Model for Making Clinical Assessments”
  2. Christine Harrison et al., “Bioethics for Clinicians: Involving Children in Medical Decisions”
  3. Barry F. Brown, “Proxy Consent for Research on the Incompetent Elderly”
  4. Reibl v. Hughes [1980] (Case Summary by C. Morano)
  5. Richard Huxtable and Julie Woodley, “Gaining Face or Losing Face? Framing the Debate on Face Transplants”
  6. Andrew Edgar, “The Challenge of Transplants to an Intersubjectively Established Sense of Personal Identity”

Web Link

  1. Christine Overall, “Reflections on Reproductive Rights in Canada”
  2. John A. Robertson, “Class, Feminist, and Communitarian Critiques of Procreative Liberty”
  3. Raymond G. De Vries et al., “Choosing Surgical Birth: Desire and the Nature of Bioethical Advice”
  4. M.M. Peterson, “Assisted Reproductive Technologies and Equity of Access Issues”
  5. Carolyn McLeod and Françoise Baylis, “Donating Fresh versus Frozen Embryos to Stem Cell Research: In Whose Interests?”
  6. Neil Levy and Mianna Lotz, “Reproductive Cloning and a (Kind of) Genetic Fallacy”
  7. Leon R. Kass, “The Wisdom of Repugnance”


  1. Don Marquis, “Why Abortion Is Immoral”
  2. Mary Anne Warren, “The Moral Significance of Birth”
  3. Susan Sherwin, “Abortion through a Feminist Ethics Lens”
  4. Winnipeg Child and Family Services (Northwest Area) v. G. (D.F.) [1997] (Case Summary by C. Morano)
  5. Peter Alward, “Ignorance, Indeterminacy, and Abortion Policy”
  6. Elizabeth Harman, “How Is the Ethics of Stem Cell Research Different from the Ethics of Abortion?”
  7. S. Sheldon and S. Wilkinson, “Should Selecting Saviour Siblings Be Banned?”
  8. Victoria Seavilleklein, “Challenging the Rhetoric of Choice in Prenatal Screening”
  9. Thomas H. Murray, “Moral Obligations to the Not-Yet Born: The Fetus as Patient”
  10. Mary B. Mahowald, “Decisions Regarding Disabled Newborns”


  1. Margaret P. Battin, “Euthanasia: The Fundamental Issues”
  2. Daniel Callahan, “When Self-Determination Runs Amok”
  3. Rodriguez v. The Attorney General of Canada and the Attorney General of British Columbia [1993] (Case Summary by C. Morano)
  4. Susan M. Wolf, “Gender, Feminism, and Death: Physician- Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia”
  5. Jennifer A. Parks, “Why Gender Matters to the Euthanasia Debate: On Decisional Capacity and the Rejection of Women’s Death Requests”
  6. Robert D. Truog, “Is It Time to Abandon Brain Death?”
  7. F.G. Miller, “Death and Organ Donation: Back to the Future”

Web Links

  1. Sam Horng and Christine Grady, “Misunderstanding in Clinical Research: Distinguishing Therapeutic Misconception, Therapeutic
    Misestimation, and Therapeutic Optimism”
  2. Franklin G. Miller and Howard Brody, “A Critique of Clinical Equipoise: Therapeutic Misconception in the Ethics of Clinical
  3. Ana Smith Iltis, “Placebo Controlled Trials: Restrictions, Not Prohibitions”
  4. Françoise Baylis et al., “Reframing Research Involving Humans”
  5. Wendy Rogers, “Evidence-Based Medicine and Women: Do the Principles and Practice of EBM Further Women’s Health?”
  6. Udo Schüklenk et al., “The Ethics of Genetic Research on Sexual Orientation”
  7. Arthur L. Caplan et al., “Moving the Womb”

Web Link

  1. George J. Annas, “The Prostitute, the Playboy, and the Poet: Rationing Schemes for Organ Transplantation”
  2. Mary Mahowald, “As If There Were Fetuses without Women: A Remedial Essay”
  3. Aaron Spital, “Conscription of Cadaveric Organs for Transplantation: A Stimulating Idea Whose Time Has Not Yet Come”
  4. Michael J. Reiss, “The Ethics of Xenotransplantation”
  5. M.J. Selgelid, “Pandethics”
  6. Howard Brody and Eric N. Avery, “Medicine’s Duty to Treat Pandemic Illness: Solidarity and Vulnerability”
  7. Lynette Reid, “Diminishing Returns? Risk and the Duty to Care in the SARS Epidemic”
  8. Deborah Zion, “HIV/AIDS Clinical Research, and the Claims of Beneficence, Justice, and Integrity”

Web Links

  1. Garrath Williams and Doris Schroeder, “Human Genetic Banking: Altruism, Benefit and Consent”
  2. Inmaculada De Melo-Martin, “Furthering Injustices against Women: Genetic Information, Moral Obligations, and Gender”
  3. Elizabeth Fenton, “Genetic Enhancement—A Threat to Human Rights?”
  4. Lee M. Silver, “Cloning, Ethics, and Religion”
  5. Inmaculada De Melo-Martin, “On Cloning Human Beings”
  6. George J. Annas et al., “Protecting the Endangered Human: Toward an International Treaty Prohibiting Cloning and Inheritable Alterations”
  7. Nick Bostrom, “In Defense of Posthuman Dignity”
  8. Christine Overall, “Précis of Aging, Death, and Human Longevity: A Philosophical Inquiry”


Elisabeth (Boetzkes) Gedge is Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy at McMaster University.

Wilfrid J. Waluchow is Professor and Senator William McMaster Chair in Constitutional Studies in the Department of Philosophy at McMaster University, and Adjunct Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School.

The student companion site hosts links to web resources referenced in the book.

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