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Disease as Scientific and as Value-Laden Concept

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Handbook of the Philosophy of Medicine
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Abstract

Health and disease are central concepts in medical practice. Defining them may assist in determining the scope of medicine; legitimizing medicine and psychiatry; and determining or even justly distributing medical care. This chapter reviews the philosophical literature on health and disease. It discusses naturalism (the view that disease is a value-free concept), normativism (the view that the concept of disease is, essentially, value laden), and reasons why the polarizing opposition between naturalism and normativism may have to be rejected or, at least, nuanced.

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Correspondence to Elselijn Kingma .

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Kingma, E. (2016). Disease as Scientific and as Value-Laden Concept. In: Schramme, T., Edwards, S. (eds) Handbook of the Philosophy of Medicine. Springer, Dordrecht. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-017-8706-2_75-1

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-017-8706-2_75-1

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