Methods to identify and address the ethical issues associated with managed care

Penn Bioeth J. Spring 2006;2(2):3-7.


There are many benefits of managed care, such as its focus on disease prevention and health promotion, its integration of healthcare services to minimize inefficiencies, and its ability to restrict healthcare costs; however, there are also some ethical concerns that arise from managing care. In the context of managed care, ethics is a method for examining conflicts of values and obligations where there are competing interests, each of which presents a reasonably justified position. The principles of procedural, commutative, and general justice are particularly applicable to the ethical issues associated with managed care. Through a review of relevant literature, this paper will examine different methods and principles of justice to consider in establishing an ethical managed care organization and it will offer some examples of plans that have established policies to meet their ethical goals. By setting common goals, plans and enrollees can minimize ethical conflicts and collaborate to ensure that plans consistently use just procedures to ensure that quality care is available.

MeSH terms

  • Community Participation
  • Efficiency
  • Ethics Committees
  • Ethics, Business
  • Ethics, Institutional*
  • Evidence-Based Medicine
  • Managed Care Programs / ethics*
  • Organizations, Nonprofit
  • Resource Allocation / ethics
  • Social Justice*
  • Tax Exemption
  • United States