Defense Date


Graduation Date

Spring 5-13-2022


Immediate Access

Submission Type


Degree Name



Health Care Ethics


McAnulty College and Graduate School of Liberal Arts

Committee Chair

Gerard Magill

Committee Member

Joris Gielen

Committee Member

Peter I. Osuji

Committee Member

Kristine L. Blair


Human Life, Bioethics, Critique, Healthcare, Nigeria, Personal Dignity, Human Solidarity


Life is a sacred gift, an indivisible good with an inherent dignity and value. Despite its uniqueness, fragility, vulnerability, and limitations, it remains the most interesting, attractive, and exciting thing one can possess. These attributes invoke a deep sense of respect to life. Recently, science and biotechnology have astonished the world, as they continue to disorient human consciousness on new set of ethical issues. In effect, life is seriously exposed to the perspectives of modern science and technology. Thus, President George W. Bush warns that the powers of science are morally neutral, capable for good and bad purposes. In the excitement of scientific discovery, humanity is not defined by intelligence alone, but by conscience. He then cautions that most of noble scientific ends do not necessarily justify every means.

Amidst all the scientific innovations and challenges, a new branch of moral philosophy has emerged, “Bioethics”. Bioethics in its multidimensional perspectives is capable to address most of the ethical challenges in modern medicine like decision-making, organ harvesting and transplant, scientific research with human participants, euthanasia, physician-assisted suicide, medical futility, withdrawal and withholding of treatments, death and dying, palliative

care for a dignified end-of-life, etc. Therefore, against this background and to ensure that both bio(ethics) and medicine advance along the same pathway toward caring, promoting and safeguarding human life and health, this dissertation is specifically selected to envisage on: A Bioethics Critique of the Healthcare System in Nigeria: Personal Dignity and Human Solidarity. The essence is to establish the need and urgency of the application of bioethical principles in places like Nigeria. This is to keep medicine true to its original moral objectives of curing diseases, caring for life and health, alleviating pains and sufferings, etc. Hence, medicine is a moral endeavor, a human project with discernible (bio)ethical principles and purposes.