One For All, All For One? Collective Representation in Healthcare Policy

J Bioeth Inq. 2018 Sep;15(3):337-340. doi: 10.1007/s11673-018-9870-9.


Healthcare collectives, such as patient organizations, advocacy groups, disability organizations, professional associations, industry advocates, social movements, and health consumer organizations have been increasingly involved in healthcare policymaking. Such collectives are based on the idea that individual interests can be aggregated into collective interests by participation, deliberation, and representation. The topic of collectivity in healthcare, more specifically collective representation, has only rarely been addressed in (Western) bioethics. This symposium, entitled: "Collective Representation in Healthcare Policy" of the Journal of Bioethical Inquiry draws attention to this understudied topic from a variety of disciplines, within a variety of socio-cultural contexts. We draw attention to important ethical, cultural, and social questions, and into the practices, justifications for, and implications of collective representation of patients in healthcare policy.

MeSH terms

  • Bioethical Issues*
  • Bioethics*
  • Community Participation*
  • Health Policy*
  • Humans
  • Organizations*
  • Patient Advocacy*
  • Patient Participation
  • Policy Making*