Ethical Reasoning

By Veronicka Diaz

In general, I believe it is appropriate for public health policies to require individuals to
do something only when the intention behind such enforcement is for the greater good. A lot of
people think that certain policies are in place to affect our freedom. Although there are valid
points behind this, as a society, we should approach certain controversies from different point of

In general, I believe it is appropriate for public health policies to prohibit individuals
from something only when there is more of a negative than positive outcome to the greater
good behind certain rules being placed. There will be pros and cons behind most rules, but it is up to
us to determine the weight behind our choices.

Surgical hand-washing has become the easiest, most affordable, and most effective pre-op
method of killing microorganisms (Gulsen et al 2021). There is a lot of room for infection
during surgeries. Healthcare professionals have several techniques to practice before, after, and
during sterile surgical procedures. Hand-washing can prevent surgical site infections from
happening if people are compliant and willing to follow proper surgical hand-washing.

The spread of germs outside of healthcare facilities should still be taken seriously. A lot of children
do not know the importance of hand hygiene, causing them to not practice this as much in school
or at home. We should develop a reward system at schools that will help children understand and
encourage them to wash their hands. Other people may not care or believe in reward systems
and think people should just be accountable for themselves. This would depend highly on how
disciplined people are. Some of my classmates think we should create a reward system for
adults which is also a great idea because the spread of infection is throughout all ages and not
just children.

There is a more political approach and controversy when it comes to vaccinations.
Vaccinations have been beneficial to society since they has been proven to build peoples immunity
to several different viruses. Although the nation’s population has been receiving mandatory
vaccinations throughout the years, the introduction of the COVID vaccine became a touchy
subject in the U.S. A lot of places were not allowing customers without the proof of a
vaccination card. This also applied to airlines, international countries, and concerts. People
should be rewarded for receiving vaccinations because of the success that has come from them.
We should be thanking the success of the vaccine for allow society to return to normal.

It is proven that the COVID vaccine is the most effective way to prevent the spread of the virus. (She
et al 2021). If we reward citizens for receiving the vaccines, then this might encourage other
people to get vaccinated as well. A lot of parents are against the COVID vaccine because they
did not believe there was enough research and that the vaccines caused autism in children. There has been no
direct link between the two. Other people believe it ruins their principle of autonomy since
people were trying to pass bills that required everyone to get the vaccinations. This can make
people feel like they are losing their rights and are not allowed to live freely. With the reward
system, it still allows people to make a choice. Ethically, vaccinations can help slow the spread of
viruses and decrease the amount of people that become sick each year, this can be a reward
within itself.

Over the years, we have seen a decrease in smoking areas throughout our communities. A
lot of restaurants and hotels no longer allow smoking inside their facilities. This has been
enforced to decrease the spread of secondhand smoke in which has been proven to have negative
effects on those that inhale this smoke. My job currently rewards us $50 a year for not smoking. Although it may seem small, it still encourages us to continue doing what we are doing. It shows
that our company wants to acknowledge us for doing what is best for our health.

I saw some people in our discussion board saying that they should still allow vapes in these areas since some of
them can be nicotine free. This may have less effects on people around them but still does not
relay the message that no smoking is allowed. People think there should be less smoking areas to
increase the inconvenience of smokers, causing them to not smoke as often since it is less
accessible. This is a proper approach of slowing down the spread of secondhand smoke because
some people may not want to try to find a smoking area that may cause them to slowly quit

Lastly, supervised injection sites have become a proposal to prevent overdoses in the
United States. Prescription opioid deaths have quadrupled in the last 20 years. (Kennedy et al
2017). These sites can help decrease the fatal overdoses and can help people from sharing
syringes or discarding used syringes in the public. I helped launch one of the first government
safe injection site trials in Oklahoma when I was in the Army and believe that there should be more
of these clinics in the country. Addiction is an illness, and we need to take it seriously and treat it

I felt disappointed how some people mentioned we should not create these clinics because
people should be accountable for their own actions and think IV drug users can just stop
abruptly. It is important to provide help and provide resources to guide people in the right direction to
become clean. However, another classmate mentioned this can increase crime by giving an exact
location of IV drug users. Police can wait outside and arrest those trying to get help just because
they know where they will be. If we were to organize supervised safe injection sites, we would
need to organize how to supply people with the help legally.

In conclusion, many of these approaches are to help people and to better health for the greater good. If there were more negatives than positives for these policies then it would make sense to not follow through with these proposals. Overtime, there will be different studies and research articles done to prove different sides to these controversial topics. If we all continue to come together and weigh the pros and cons then we can possibly make a decision that is best for

Gulsen, M. (2022, December). Surgical handwashing practices of operating room staff: An
observational study. Retrieved from https://onlinelibrary-wiley-
She, J. (2021, October 6). Providing children with COVID‐19 vaccinations is challenging due
to lack of data and wide‐ranging parental acceptance. Retrieved from https://onlinelibrary-
Kennedy, M. (2017, January). Overdose Prevention in the United States: A Call for Supervised
Injection Sites. Retrieved from https://web-p-ebscohost-

Categories: Home, op ed

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