Ethics - Religion and Medical Ethics

Ethics - Religion and Medical Ethics - Christianity

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  • Created by: EMayH
  • Created on: 10-04-10 12:16


Pro-Life vs Pro-Choice

Most of Christianity (especially Roman Catholic Church = Pro-Life

Arguments - Pro-Life

  • Fundamental right to life denied with abortion
  • Life begins at contraception
  • Each child is gift from God and part of His plan
  • Abortion is murder - One of the ten commandments
  • If the woman doesn't want the baby they should give it up for adoption to solve the problem of people not being able to have their own children
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Some Christians = Pro-Choice

Arguments - Pro-Choice

  • Women have the choice to do what they want with their bodies.
  • Some families are not stable enough to support a baby well enough (financially, emotionally etc.)
  • If the baby is disabled it could have a very poor quality of life and make the parents quality of life bad as well, however much they love the child.
  • There are already so many unwanted children in the world, if people are forced to have these unwanted babies, there will be yet more.
  • Other members of the family may not want a baby in the family/may not be able to cope with having a baby in the family.
  • A woman has been ***** and had gotten pregnant, would be forced to have the rapists baby which could be incredibly traumatic.
  • In the bible it says to "do to others as you would have them do to you" which many Christians interpret as whatever choice someone makes, you should respect them and their choice, whether or not you agree.
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Fertility Treatment

Old views on childlessness

  • People with no children frowned upon
  • People assumed that if people were childless, then God wanted it that way and was possibly punishing them.

More modern views on childlessness

  • Viewpoint 1 : Fertility treatments such as IVF and AIH are acceptable as long as the sperm is from the husband and the eggs are from the wife. The embyos that are discarded are not yet foetuses and therefore not yet human beings so it is ok.
  • Viewpoint 2 : Any form of fertility treatments are wrong for two main reasons. One, because most of the treatments involve male masturbation and the Chatechism of the Catholic does not agree with this. Secondly, in many fertility procedures many embryos are created and then consequently discarded or used for scientific research. The Catholic Church especially believes that from the moment of contraception embryos are human and therefore the misuse of them is wrong. They don't believe people have a 'right' to have children and can adopt instead.
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Most Christians believe in :

  • The Sanctity of Life (can also be used in arguments for abortion and fertility) - Life is a gift from God and each life is special.
  • The right to live and die with dignity.

Different views on Euthanasia

Baptist/Methodist (Nonconformist Churches)

  • People should be given care and support so that they do not need to even think of turning to Euthanasia.
  • If someone is brain-dead and being kept alive artificially then there is no duty to keep them alive.
  • Hospices should be more available for terminally ill people to help and support them.
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The Church of England

  • Life is sacred and holy.
  • Everything possible should be done to keep someone alive unless they have no quality of life.
  • Elderly people should be treated with great respect and be shown how important they are to society.
  • If a decision on saving someone's life is made, many people should be involved in the decision including doctors and relatives.
  • Vunerable people need to be cared for and given support so they don't turn to Euthanasia

The Roman Catholic Church

  • All Euthanasia is wrong.
  • Only God has the right to give and take away life.
  • 'The Law of Double Effect' - Pain relieving drugs that may, as a side effect shorten life, are ok.
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Past Christian view on suicide:

  • It was 'self-murder' and therefore, as murder is a crime and goes against the ten commandments, was wrong.
  • The Roman Catholic Church said that it was a 'mortal-sin' which could stop them getting to heaven.
  • People who committed suicide could not be buried with others in a churchyard

Modern Christian views:

  • Understand that someon who commits suicide is not wicked but that the person was just deeply unhappy.
  • Many Christians volenteer in charities such as "The Samaritans" to help improve people's lives to stop them turning to suicide.
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Animal's used in Research

Christians believe that :

  • Animals are different to humans. For example, they are not made in God's image as humans are, they have no soul, and humans are meant to rule over them.
  • A perfect world would be where animals and humans live together in harmony, with neither being exploited.
  • That everything is God's creation, including animals and God loves all of his creations.
  • Animals should be respected but can be used to eat.
  • Animals lives are less valuable than human life and therefore can be used to improve medical care for humans. However the animal must be treated as humanely as possible.
  • There are so many humans suffering in the world that we should try to help them before animals (Roman Catholic)
  • Factory farming, blood sports and unecassary cruelty towards animals is wrong as there is no need for any of these and they can't take place without some cruelty being involved.
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Joshua Mouncer


good revision card, thanks :)



Really useful. Your saved me .... Thanks :)



On the first card, it says 'Life Begins At Contraception' rather than 'Life Begins At Conception'
Other than that, really useful cards!! :) **

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