In these two episodes of The Minefield podcast Waleed Aly and Scott Stephens tackle some of the biggest questions being asked as the outbreak of Covid-19 (coronavirus) unfolds – what now and where to?
With guest Paul Komesaroff, a practising physician and Professor in the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences at Monash University and Director of the Centre for Ethics in Medicine and Society, they explore what our reactions to the outbreak say about who we are. With Stephanie Collins, Associate Professor of Philosophy at Australian Catholic University, they consider what communal life might look like post-Covid.
The scale of the outbreak’s impact means that choices need to be made when life begins to return to ‘normal’. Will we do things the same way and just press the start button, or will we choose to make changes and operate differently in the future? Life at the end of 2020 will certainly look different to life at the beginning of the year, but how?
via ABC, 18 & 25 March 2020See More
There have been a number of articles written, including by our CEO, on the approaches healthcare professionals could and should adopt when making decisions about the allocation of scarce resources during crises.
All draw on key philosophical concepts to define what is just. There are a number of lenses through which to view the issues such as utlitiarianism, contractualism, egalitarianism and virtue ethics. However, there are no rules or guidelines which will provide absolute certainty in extraordinary situations. When it comes to the crunch, individuals in leadership positions and on the front line must make the best decisions they can.
All leaders must be prepared to face, at some point, unforeseen and complex challenges. While the current crisis is an extreme example, these are not the times to start thinking about your own personal ethics and convictions. Confidently making decisions at such times requires leaders to already have a strong, well developed ethical framework upon which to build their thinking. For their own benefit, and because, ultimately, the community needs to rely on the judgement of its leaders, and trust that they have our best interests at heart.
via The Atlantic and ABC, 11 & 18 March 2020See More
As the outbreak of COVID-19 engulfs more of our lives we are increasingly faced with serious ethical questions about what ordinary people should be obliged to do for others. Acting selfishly has more consequences than usual right now.
This article explores why it’s so important that individually we all exercise ethical judgement and offers some guidelines to navigate the moral challenges created by COVID-19, with the reminder that as the stakes rise, acts of kindness and support are more important than ever before.
The Conversation, 24 March 2020See More
This short piece by Alain de Botton on Camus’ famous novella about a plague is very clever and beautifully written. Recognising and acknowledging the strange days in which we’re currently living, it introduces, says our Moderator Frank di Giorgio, “a broader existential perspective to our collective situation.”
via New York Times, 19 March 2020See More
Temporary visa holders and recent permanent migrants play a vital role in healthcare and the economy — and that’s just one reason why the rules need to keep evolving during the current crisis.
Inside Story, 21 March 2020See More