Guidelines to Prevent the Malevolent Use of Physicians in War
The question of how to prevent the malevolent use of physicians in war is not new. Historically the lines were far more distinct than they are today. When physicians were clearly noncombatants in a civilian culture tending to the sick and wounded of belligerent, armed combatants, regardless of country of origin, protecting and preserving the integrity of the healing arts was less complicated. Today physicians wear the uniform of their countries, travel imbedded with the fighting forces to intervene and to provide care and treatment to the sick or wounded soldier as quickly as possible with the best expectation of survival. Military physicians participate in medical research and development with suspicion regarding the benevolent nature of the research as to the outcomes and use for improving the means of healing as opposed to improving the means of killing and inflicting harm. The use of medical knowledge and those who apply this knowledge in a war scenario continually face the ethical burden to preserve the caring and compassionate nature of the healing arts.
KeywordsMedical Ethic Medical Professional Geneva Convention World Medical Association Declaration Military Medicine
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