National Institutes of Health Clinical Center

Research

Health Policy

The Ethics of Priority Setting for Health

This project led by Marion Danis in the Section on Ethics and Health Policy involves research aimed at facilitating fair and effective allocation of resources to promote health.

The ethical challenge of justly distributing limited resources is among the most persistent and thorny questions in health policy. Our research aims to examine both analytical questions that continue to perplex moral theorists and empirical questions regarding how the public believes resources should be allocated, how resources are in fact distributed by health care providers, as well as how fair resource distribution might be enhanced. We recognize that health care systems are complex and involve participants at multiple policy and practice levels; participants at each of these levels have important roles to play, and decisions made at one level affect decisions and outcomes at other levels. We also recognize, from growing research in social epidemiology, that health cannot be guaranteed by actions in the health care sector alone. Thus our research has increasingly focused broadly on the ethics of allocating resources across policy sectors in order to address the social determinants of health and foster widespread population health.

Full Description (circa 2010) PDF Icon (142 KB)

Choosing Healthplans All Together (CHAT) project [disclaimer]


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