Medical Ethics in Abortion

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Medical Ethics in Abortion

Medical Ethics in Abortion (Patil et al., 2014)

The article above discusses the issue of abortion using medical ethics principles. This includes analyzing the ethics surrounding the termination of pregnancy, the dilemmas concerning aborting of a malformed fetus, and the right to life of both mother and fetus.
The author starts by stating the obvious, abortion is one of the most contentious topics globally. Medical ethics in the past were left to the judgement of physicians. However, theoretically based approaches have replaced this idea using logical theories such as teleology, care ethics and virtue ethics to resolve such dilemmas. These theories are based on an ethical problem-solving approach founded in respect for justice, nonmaleficence, beneficence and autonomy (Torres & De Vries, 2009).
Every human has a right to live. The question therefore becomes, what is a human? This poses a moral dilemma in defining when an embryo becomes a person since there is a difference between destroying or killing something and preventing the same thing from coming into existence. Abortion opponents argue that a fetus is a human and killing a human, especially an innocent one, is ethically wrong. On the extreme side of this argument is the view that abortion is equated to murder, and women should not have the right to “kill” their kids, despite the suffering they are likely to undergo. The proponents of abortion on the other hand claim that abortion is morally justifiable since no one is under the obligation to conceive if doing so causes them harm or prevents them from achieving other worthwhile objectives. On the issue of aborting malformed fetuses, the author claims that parents desire to raise kids of a certain quality and raises the issue of extra money and resources required to raise a kid with disabilities. Advances in the medical field have added to the legal and ethical considerations surrounding the fetus with the establishment of the fetus as a patient.
The article concludes by stating that compelling women to bear unwanted kids is unethical and that if the fetus is indeed a human, it has a right to live. This places emphasis on the notion of person-hood as the root of the abortion dilemma. In the context of human rights, there is a need to balance the rights of the fetus with those of the mother. This knowledge should inform the dilemma involving abortion in public health. There is a difference between ethical and legality and both sides should be aware of this as they make their arguments, focusing on the safety and health of both mother and fetus.




Patil, A., Dode, P., & Ahirrao, A. (2014). Medical Ethics in Abortion. Indian Journal Of Clinical Practice25(6), 544-547. Retrieved 21 October 2021, from

Torres, J., & De Vries, R. (2009). Birthing Ethics: What Mothers, Families, Childbirth Educators, Nurses, and Physicians Should Know About the Ethics of Childbirth. Journal Of Perinatal Education18(1), 12-24.×396192