Write in no more than 600 words but no less than 500 words.
1. Before the mid-1960s, the mentally-ill people were likely to be institutionalized. However, the deinstitutionalization movement of the 1960s and 70s resulted in the case that the mentally-disabled tend to get imprisoned. In other words, deinstitutionalization has led to the criminalization of the mentally ill people in our society because they are considered sane. The unique difficulty of the problem is that most cases of psychosis are “disorders of thought” and thus that there has always been the suspicion that the clinical diagnosis of psychosis was, in fact, a socio-ethical judgment. That is why the 20th-century psychiatrist and professor of psychiatry, Thomas Szasz, claims that there is no neutral, value-free psychiatry and thus that most, if not all, psychiatric diagnoses are of subjective or socially-biased opinions. Do you agree with Szasz or not? Explain why you agree or why you do not, and show what public health arrangement you believe is necessary to resolve the problem?
2. In all U.S. states, the age of majority is generally defined as 18 years, but minors around 12 years of age are legally allowed to seek HIV testing without parents’ approval including care related to sexual activity. Do you believe this practice is ethically justifiable or not? Discuss by reference to the violation of parental autonomy, state beneficence, etc.
3. Imagine that you are the CEO of a pharmaceutical company which produces HIV/AIDS drugs. You have the responsibility to the company’s shareholders and employees. But you want to act in the public interest with regard to the HIV/AIDS pandemic in the U.S. How would you make it happen? Write a brief letter to the shareholders based on their ethical vision.
4. It is reported that in the U.S. around $2.0 to 2.3 billion could be saved by reducing injuries caused by gun violence roughly the same cost to spent on obesity and diabetes. However, the advocates of gun ownership, pointing out an individual’s autonomy, strongly resist the government’s gun control. Do you believe that in public health debate the individual’s autonomy can be considered to trump the state’s nonmaleficent concern coupled with the economic concern? Discuss.
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