Introduction to Medical Ethics and Law
This article is aimed at 6th form students who are looking to apply for medicine. This covers the key ethical principles and laws and how to apply them to help students in preparation for their medical interviews.
Ethics are principles that govern a person’s behaviour. You might have heard of the classic ethical dilemma- ‘You are watching a train about to kill 3 workers on a train track. Would you pull a lever to divert it, so it kills 1 person instead?’ Regardless of which option you choose, when a doctor is placed in an ethical dilemma it is important to have a framework for thinking about the arguments in support of and against the different options and come to a justified conclusion for yourself. Therefore, rather than learning all the endless ethical scenarios, this article will take you through the key ethical principles that can be applied to any scenario. Additionally, we will cover some fundamental aspects of medical law and then we will apply it to a few key cases.