Medical, social and ethical issues related to COVID-19

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The recent pandemic caused by the novel coronavirus strain (COVID-19) has suddenly and radically shattered all ideas about the norm, not only in medical practice but also in society. This has particularly affected the healthcare system, physicians, and the distribution of life-sustaining therapy in the context of limited resources and the absence of a known treatment protocol. One of the main ethical dilemmas of the coronavirus epidemic has been the confrontation between public health ethics, reflected in the fair distribution of limited resources and a focus on public safety, and patient-centred clinical ethics. Ultimately, the COVID-19 pandemic is putting medical staff in tragic situations that they have never faced. And in the case of a shortage of medical staff — doctors and nurses, ventilators and other life-supporting devices for patients or even just beds in hospitals, it frequently becomes necessary to classify patients and decide an order to determine who, where and what kind of help will receive (or not receive) and in what queue to provide it. Another important problem was the problem of digital control of citizens, who must limit their freedoms for preserving the health of other citizens. The fear is widely shared that the situation will allow manipulation citizens in the future when there is no epidemiological need. Also, the problem of the responsibi-lity of politicians and authorized organizations for the health not only its people but all over the world arises. These and other questions today require bioethical expertise.

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About the authors

F T Nezhmetdinova

Kazan State Agrarian University

Author for correspondence.

Russian Federation, Kazan, Russia

M E Guryleva

Kazan State Medical University


Russian Federation, Kazan, Russia


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