Special Ancillary-Care Obligations: The Partial-Entrustment Model

Henry S. Richardson

in Moral Entanglements

Published in print October 2012 | ISBN: 9780195388930
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780199979196 | DOI:
Special Ancillary-Care Obligations: The Partial-Entrustment Model

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This chapter sets out, in revised form, the author’s basic position on medical researchers’ ancillary-care obligations, first set out in a pair of articles with Leah Belsky in 2004: the partial-entrustment model. This model avoids assimilating medical researchers to clinicians or bench scientists and indicates that their special ancillary-care obligation is limited in two ways. First, it is limited in scope, for it applies only to needs that are uncovered by exercising the special permissions obtained from research subjects during the informed-consent process. Second, it is limited in strength on the basis of various contextual factors. Dickert & Wendler’s case-based criticism of the scope limitation (JAMA, 2009) is rebutted; their call for grounding ancillary-care obligations in the “relationship” between researchers and subjects is too vague as it stands, but motivates us to look more deeply into this relationship.

Keywords: research ethics; ancillary care; partial-entrustment model; Neil Dickert; David Wendler

Chapter.  11154 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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