Medical Ethics in Global Health Radiology

  • Sarah L. AverillEmail author
  • Farouk Dako
  • Janet H. Pollard


This chapter is offered as an acknowledgment of the importance of ethics in the reflective, appropriate care of patients in global radiology outreach. Low-resource work environments present unique ethical challenges to radiology outreach efforts. Even the most thoughtfully assembled team will confront unanticipated situations and face difficult choices. Principles of classical and global health ethics as they relate to the physician-patient relationship, technical resource limitations, and research are offered as a framework to approach and respond to these difficult situations. Cultural differences add layers of complexity to the evaluation and resolution of ethical dilemmas. Today, the universal applicability of principles from the Western tradition is increasingly debated. “Whose ethics?” is an appropriate question to ask when applying ethical principles to problems in diverse cultural and geopolitical settings. In this chapter, several real-world case scenarios encountered in the field are described and evaluated from the standpoint of Western and non-Western ethical principles and available resources for guidance.


Radiology outreach Global inequalities radiology Medical ethics developing world Global health ethics International research ethics Radiation safety international RAD-AID Non-Western bioethics Informed consent standards Multiculturalism 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sarah L. Averill
    • 1
    Email author
  • Farouk Dako
    • 2
  • Janet H. Pollard
    • 3
  1. 1.Iowa City VA Health Care System, Department of RadiologyIowa CityUSA
  2. 2.Temple University Hospital, Department of RadiologyPhiladelphiaUSA
  3. 3.University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, Department of RadiologyIowa CityUSA

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