Title

Why the Duty to Research Falls on Institutions Rather than Individuals

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2019

ISSN

1536-0075

Publisher

Taylor & Francis

Language

en-US

Abstract

One often-overlooked task for applied ethics is to determine not just what must be done, but who should do it. It may be true that someone ought to perform clinical research on innovative forms of health care practice, but it is not necessarily the case that any particular innovating clinician has an obligation to do so. We argue that an affirmative duty to conduct research would redirect scarce clinical resources and compel clinicians to perform tasks outside of their scope of training, expertise, and professional expectation, infringing upon beneficence and justice. It may also produce poorer quality science with a greater risk of bias. Instead, this need for research would be better served by a division of labor and an institutional response, at the level of health care networks and national investments.

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