The Patient as Victim and Vector, New Edition: Ethics and Infectious Disease

The Patient as Victim and Vector, New Edition: Ethics and Infectious Disease

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Author/Contributor(s): Battin, Margaret P
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
Date: 01/18/2021
Binding: Paperback
Condition: NEW
This book-first published a decade before the COVID-19 pandemic erupted-is the first authored volume on ethical issues in infectious disease, monumental for its competence and comprehensiveness. It is augmented here with a new Preface on COVID-19. The book develops an ethical framework for
exploring contagious infectious disease, the patient-as-victim-and-vector view, grounded in the biological fact that a person with a communicable infectious disease is not only a victim of that disease, but at the same time also a potential vector. The patient may be both threatened, someone made
ill or facing death, but also a threat, someone who may transmit an illness that will sicken or kill others. Clinical medicine has tended to see one part of this duality and public health the other; the victim-AND-vector view insists on both, at one and the same time.

Against a background of methods from the long human history of contagious infectious disease-quarantine, isolation, cordon sanitaire, surveillance and contact tracing, testing by both archaic and modern methods, lockdown, and immunization-the victim-and-vector view spotlights ethical challenges for
clinical medicine, research, public health, and health policy. These insights are probed in the new Preface on COVID-19 and are essential in our continuing struggle to address not only the current coronavirus pandemic, but the next, and the next after that.