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Ethical and Legal Issues In Healthcare

Ethical and legal aspects are very important in healthcare industry. There are various ethical aspects such as confidentiality of patients, prevention of communicable disease, etc. Similarly, there are ample legal issues that are faced in healthcare sector such as safe medication practice, etc. Over the years, there are ample number of initiatives taken by government and many famous NGO's to prevent smokers from smoking.

Modern world consists of various anti-tobacco legislations and policies that has been developed by World Health Organisation (WHO) and kept it in a different section named as Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) (Burton and et. al., 2015). This subsection of WHO has made various plans, campaigns and policies to reduce number of smokers in all around the globe. However, this contemporary issue is still rising where diseases related to lungs and pollution is rapidly increasing and are leading to increasing ethical concerns in health care. According to Fairchild, Bayer and Colgrove, (2014), one should require to focus on main stream and do not smoke due to increasing severe illness among smokers and non-smokers.

In 1964, there has been a dramatic shift in the public’s knowledge and attitudes about smoking but still the number of smokers is huge. The key reason behind the smking trend is availability of cigarettes at low prices. Another step which was taken by government of many countries to reducing smoking was increase in raised tax rates on cigarettes which actually helped in reducing number of smokers. Apart from this, there were number of steps that WHO FCTC initiated where range of policies were developed for controlling smoking at public places. Due to this, the ratio of individuals smoking cuigrette reduced to small percentage i.e. 15–25%.

As mentioned by Haug and et. al., (2015), smoking is addictive and therefore leading to spread of many diseases among the society. Along with this, based on research investigation, smoking continuously is killing around 6.5 million people every year in all over the world. Based on an investigation, places like Singapore, India and Malaysia, smoking in younger generations has increased which could be considered as one of biggest concerns that these nations need to focus and control.. This suggests that measures beyond the FCTC, that target youth in particular, are necessary to further reduce the public health burdens of smoking.

It is being critically evaluated that, prevention of people (smokers) could only be done if they are willing too. It can be analysed that prevention can be based on developing awareness regarding tobacco among large number of people. Most of the nations are restricted or ban use of tobacco at specific place. Every person in society has right to make own decisions like if they are willing smoke or not, until and unless it is not harming others. Here also, government can only give them warning to reduce or quit smoking as it can lead them to face various diseases like Cancer, Asthma and so on. This could be considered as one of the main reasons behind ineffectiveness of various quit smoking campaigns.

On the other hand, if it is thought with a different perspective, government of different nations and WHO have made different policies like no smoking at public area, and if an individual found smoking, he/she will get charged. According to …, main reason behind this is that, people who smokes at public area, encourages others or teenagers as well and they might start smoking. But, there are some places where smoking is ban, it directly raised cravings among people.

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Therefore, taking strict action may lead government or other essential bodies to deal with a number of problems. Most reluctantly, WHO FCTC and other governmental bodies are continuously trying their level best to take right decisions so that number of smokers could be reduced to minimal. Ethical responses and different factors based on mentality of public has been crucial among these campaigns and policies. It can be analysed that, most of the countries are ban or restrict smoking or tobacco substances. Because it is dangerous for human health and create bad impact on their body.

According to Jha and Peto, (2014), Utilitarianism is an effective philosophical theory based on making right determinations, that basically maximizes utility. In present time, it can be understood on the basis of a phrase where “greatest well-being of the greatest number of people”. If it is talked about prevention of people from smoking tobacco, government has made number of policies to keep the individuals safe and secured at the same time. Away with this, Deontology i.e. an approach, where basically a situation is good or bad depends on whether the action that was conducted was right or wrong.

In present case, where smokers and both government of different countries have kept their focus on "right" is its conformity with a moral norm. This could be understood with a good example, where an individual is willing to smoke cigarettes as much as he/she can, this will directly not support the environment and would lead earth to get polluted with smoke. An argument that took place where world without starvation was a bad state of affairs because of the way in which it was brought about. This theory clearly states that it is very much necessary for people to know about the -prevention of smoking tobacco as then only they will be able to prevent themselves from the diseases caused by them. It is Ethically right as it helps in savings the life of people. Therefore such theories are required to be implemented.

As given by Primack and et. al., (2014), Virtue ethics basically consists of three major approaches in normative ethics. Moral character related to smokers have been bad of public and approaches which basically emphasizes responsibility along with the rule as well of government of countries where they have made ample number of policies to reduce the number of people or smokers.


  • Burton, S. and et. al., 2015. “Smoking is bad, it's not cool… yet I'm still doing it”: Cues for tobacco consumption in a ‘dark’market. Journal of Business Research.
  • Fairchild, A. L., Bayer, R. and Colgrove, J., 2014. The renormalization of smoking? E-cigarettes and the tobacco “endgame”. New England Journal of Medicine.
  • Haug, S. and et. al., 2015. Smartphone use and smartphone addiction among young people in Switzerland. Journal of behavioral addictions.
  • Jha, P. and Peto, R., 2014. Global effects of smoking, of quitting, and of taxing tobacco. New England Journal of Medicine.
  • Primack, B. A. and et. al., 2014. Comparison of media literacy and usual education to prevent
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