1st Edition

The Need For Health Care

By W.R. Sheaff Copyright 1996
    240 Pages
    by Routledge

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    The rhetoric of 'needs' has been used to legitimate all major turns in UK health policy since 1936. This study identifies the ethical, policy and technical issues arising from the concept of needs. In the first part a theory of needs is developed, which takes into account both the philosophical traditions and the practical problems arising in daily health care. In a second part, health systems throughout the world are described and compared, addressing ethical as well as economical questions.
    Its interdisciplinary approach will make The Need for Healthcare important reading not only for those interested in or employed in the health care sector but also for students of philosophy.

    1 WHY A THEORY OF NEEDS? 1 Needs and health policy 2 The language and logic of ‘needs’ 2 WHAT KIND OF THEORY OF NEEDS? 1 Needs in ethical theory 2 Needs and naturalism 3 Needs and drives 4 Newton and the neuron 3 NEEDS, NATURE AND SOCIETY 1 Drives and their structure 2 Drives, actions and capacities 3 Drives, reason and needs 4 Needs and relativism 4 HEALTH NEEDS 1 Needs and health 2 Personal and population health needs 3 Needs for healthcare 4 Needless healthcare? 5 DOES DOCTOR KNOW BEST? 1 Doctors and patients 2 Patients’ needs 3 Clinical autonomy 6 NEEDS AND NORMALITY 1 Medical models of minds 2 Disorders and disorder 3 Involuntary healthcare 7 DILEMMAS FOR HEALTH WORKERS 1 Needs and ‘business ethics’ in healthcare 2 Scarcity 8 WHAT KIND OF HEALTH SYSTEM? 1 Comparing health systems 2 Health needs and markets 3 Health system design: social engineering 9 NEEDS, HEALTH AND MORALITY


    Rod Sheaff is a Fellow at the Health Services Management Unit, Manchester University. He has had working, research and consultancy experience both in the British NHS and many overseas health systems. He is the author of Marketing for Health Services (1991).

    'This book will challenge those involved in health policy to look critically at designing a system that meets health needs. It is also a useful contribution to healthcare ethics in the undeveloped area of theories of need.' - Contact