African American man out and about in the city streets during the day, wearing a face mask against air pollution and covid19 coronavirus, using his smartphone.

Hastings Center Report

Centering Social Justice for Covid-19 Resources and Research

Abstract: In the September-October 2021 issue of the Hastings Center Report, neither the article by MaryKatherine Gaurke et al. nor the article by Alex Rajczi et al. offers a comprehensive analysis of a just allocation of scarce resources—one “rooted in a collective agreement about what constitutes health in/justice.” This omission reflects a larger problem in bioethics: the field’s praxis continues to fail to recognize and respond to the obligation to address the fair distribution of burdens and benefits that comes with the principle of justice. This commentary calls on bioethics to incorporate a community-based participatory research (CBPR) framework as part of its praxis. The cocreation of crisis standards of care with community stakeholders, whether the standards were focused on treatments, vaccines, or novel community-engagement strategies, could set a new gold standard for the practice of social justice in research.   

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