1613 words 7 pages
Contagion is a movie based on a deadly virus, MEV-1, which spreads around the world in a matter of days (Shamberg, Sher, Jacobs & Soderbergh, 2011). The premise is that the MEV-1 virus is spread person-to-person via airborne droplets produced by sneezes or coughs, as well as by viruses deposited on fomites, such as glasses, doorknobs, peanuts, and so on. The virus circles the globe in a matter of days, causing coughs, fevers and seizures as scientists from the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) scramble to identify the pathogen and develop a vaccine. MEV-1 is presented to the audience as a pandemic. During a pandemic preserving the functionality of society is a priority (Gostin, …show more content…

The movie depicted empty public spaces, masked faces, and isolated clusters of families.
Justice in medical ethics is the equitable distribution within human society of the benefits and burdens of treatment (Edge & Groves, 2006). Social justice is essential to the mission of public health. Justice offers guidance on how to allocate scarce therapeutic resources in a public health crisis, such as a pandemic airborne virus (Gostin, 2008). Health hazards threaten the entire population; however, the poor and disabled are at heightened risk. Neglecting the needs of the vulnerable will harm the whole community by eroding public trust and undermining social cohesion. In addition, social justice demands more than fair distribution of resources. Throughout the movie it was clearly conveyed that everyone within society would be treated equally in terms of receiving treatment prior to being diagnosed and in vaccination against the virus.
Beneficence means to perform acts of kindness and charity, while promoting the health and welfare of patients (Edge & Groves, 2006). To go one step further, the act of beneficence is to offer a positive contribution towards the wellbeing of people. Several factors need to be considered before a vaccine is deployed: the potential burden of disease; vaccine-related risks (usually minimal); the desirability of prevention as opposed to treatment; the duration of the protection conferred; cost; herd immunity in addition to individual


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