The author was commissioned by the Nuffield Council on Bioethics to write this paper in order to inform the Council’s discussions about possible future work on this topic. The paper is intended to provide an overview of key clinical, ethical, social, legal and policy issues, but is not intended to offer any conclusions or recommendations regarding future policy and practice. Any views expressed in the paper are the author’s own and not those of the Nuffield Council on Bioethics.
David Hunter, Centre for Professional Ethics, Keele University
James Wilson, Comprehensive Biomedical Research Centre and Centre for Philosophy, Justice and Health, University College London
This background paper provides a summary of the ethical arguments and policy issues which arise in considering very expensive medical treatments and their place within a fixed healthcare budget such as the NHS.