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Faculdade Jesuita de Filosofia e Teologia

Source Publication

Perspectiva Teologica

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This article argues that the option for the poor offers an ethical imperative to analyze bioethical issues that are not restricted to the traditional discussion on the use of medical technology and the health professional-patient relationship. The author presents a bioethics in a liberationist key that integrates Catholic social teaching into healthcare issues and ethical challenges to promote justice through a public system based on the right to healthcare. This essay be­gins by examining the option for the poor, presented by Catholic social teaching, and how it relates to healthcare. Then, it analyses data and studies showing the relationship between poverty, illness and premature death. This analysis clearly demonstrates the existence of a vicious cycle: poverty, vulnerability to illnesses, lack of healthcare, and death. This dramatic reality must be ended because it is a threat to human life. Finally, the author suggests that a bioethics capable of responding to this challenge is yet to be built. The integration of Catholic social teaching into bioethics, with the option for the poor as an ethical imperative, offers resources for the construction of a liberating bioethics.


Published Version. Perspectiva Teologica, Vol. 51, No. 3 (2019): 461-480. DOI. © 2019 Faculdade Jesuita de Filosofia e Teologia. Used with permission.

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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