Encyclopedia of Global Bioethics: Advocacy
Advocacy is acting for others. Health professions have a long history of acting for others and an equally long history of ethical debate and discernment about such action and its scope and limits. This entry will outline historical trends in how health professionals have understood the balance of their responsibilities between the individual patient and the broader community. There is also discussion of definitions and conceptions of advocacy and how advocacy has been incorporated into various ethical codes and charters of the different health professions. Lastly, there is a discussion of ethical tensions and conflicts that arise in performing advocacy and the changes in the modern era that have heightened calls for advocacy as a core professional responsibility.