The NIH Case Study Analysis

Two different projects were offered for the analysis. Both relate to saving lives and enhancing people’s overall health and welfare. Ethics are an integral part of decision-making; consequently, any resolute decision can mean a great deal of liability. A decision thus requires a rational approach, where a responsible person is guided by logic and impartiality. There are two options, with strong arguments on both sides. On one side is the 85 percent effective vaccine, which gives hope and a rather fair chance of success, and on the other is a reliable remedy with minor side effects. This analysis is aimed at justifying the conspicuously ethical choice of the second option.

The case description mentions that the first trial of the vaccine for infants took place in a low-income South American country, where children suffer from rotavirus infection; this causes diarrhea and results in a mortality rate of approximately 20,000 deaths annually. The second program claims that this death rate is the same as those caused by the flu in the elderly and immune-suppressed population of the United States. The total cost for both projects is equal, and the affected people are the same. Therefore, it would be wrong to make a decision based on a subjective perception rather than on compassion and tolerance and under the influence of ethics (Hoffmaster, Freedom and Fraser 97). Barry Hoffmaster’s theory is one of many competing theories; he asserts that any resolution that would solve current issues immediately should be adopted (Hoffmaster, Freedom and Fraser 1). Project number one has less chance of success, and for that matter, vaccine number two is more attainable; thus, the second project deserves financing.

Such a decision may face controversy, as the Ministry of Health has a vaccine program for other diseases in place into which the rotavirus infection vaccine can be implemented; nevertheless, there is no evidence of its potential side effects on infants. Human welfare is a basic right of people, one listed in the Declaration of Rights (MacKinnon 60). Everyone should have equal access to medical treatment, notwithstanding the nature of the illness or one’s age group. At this point, it is crucial to mention that elderly people are susceptible to other illnesses after being afflicted by the flu; thus, they put others around them in jeopardy by spreading diseases further, while they themselves continue to suffer from subsequent diseases. For that reason, the influenza vaccine distribution program seems pertinent, as its distribution is attainable, and it is proven to minimize possible consequences across society (Devettere 76).Despite such notions as altruism or compassion, rationalism is the platform for ethical decision-making, since it addresses topical issues and provides resolutions to existing problem. In regards to the first project, it would be a decent solution to address private companies that can finance the project during the approbation period.

The process of selecting one of the alternatives is based on analyzing both immediate and long-term consequences of the decision. The decision making should pass the comprehension stages when the alternatives are presented and their implementation restrictions and criteria have been applied.The decision-making process is complicated significantly by the conditions of risk and uncertainty when a person has to operate with probabilities, some of which are postulated by the subject.

Works Cited

Devettere, Raymond J. Practical Decision Making in Health Care Ethics: Cases, Concepts, and the Virtue of Prudence, Washington: Georgetown University Press, 2016. Print.

Hoffmaster, Barry, Benjamin Freedom, and Gwen Fraser. Clinical Ethics: Theory and Practice, Berlin: Springer Science & Business Media, 2012. Print.

MacKinnon, Barbara. Ethics: Theory and Contemporary Issues, Boston: Cengage Learning, 2012. Print.