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A Handbook of Bioethics Terms
by James B. Tubbs
Georgetown University Press, 2009
eISBN: 978-1-58901-593-7 | Paper: 978-1-58901-259-2
Library of Congress Classification R725.5.T83 2009
Dewey Decimal Classification 174.2


The term bioethics was first used in the early 1970s by biologists who were concerned about ethical implications of genetic and ecological interventions, but was soon applied to all aspects of biomedical ethics, including health care delivery, research, and public policy. Its literature draws from disciplines as varied as clinical medicine and nursing, scientific research, theology and philosophy, law, and the social sciences—each with its own distinctive vocabulary and expressions.

A Handbook of Bioethics Terms is a handy and concise glossary-style reference featuring over 400 entries on the significant terms, expressions, titles, and court cases that are most important to the field. Most entries are cross-referenced, making this handbook a valuable addition to the bookshelves of undergraduate and graduate students in health care ethics, physicians and nurses, members of institutional ethics committees and review boards, and others interested in bioethics.

A sampling of terms from the handbook: AbortionDNR (Do Not Resuscitate)Eugenics Gene therapy Living will Natural lawPrimum non nocere Single-payer systemSurrogate consent Schiavo case

Sample Definitions:

Formalism: In ethical theory, a type of deontology in which an action is judged to be right if it is in accord with a moral rule, and wrong if it violates a moral rule.

Xenograft: Organ or tissue transplanted from one individual to another individual of another species. (See Transplantation, organ and tissue)

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