Responsibility: A “first person ethics” for vaccination

Maria Luisa Di Pietro, Pietro Refolo, Fermin J Gonzalez Melado

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


The debate over compulsory or merely recommended vaccination remains open, albeit latent, in those countries that have mandatory vaccine schedules. Despite the advantages of preventive immunization from the point of medical, economic and social features, it’s clear, in the current status of medical ethics, that the exercise of patient autonomy calls for personal responsibility in the election of treatments and, in fact, the vaccines. Therefore, it is necessary to change the simple idea of prevention as “risk reduction”, characteristic of a “third person ethic” in order to pass to a preventative medicine concept that will be able to support the achievement of moral attitudes towards achieving the good “health” for the individual and for the community. This is only possible from a “first person ethic” wherever is possible to present an alternative between mandatory vs. recommendation from the concept of “responsibility” that, with the help of a series of measures, could combine the effective protection for the whole community with the responsible exercise of the personal autonomy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139-139
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Event4th International Conference on Vaccines & Vaccination - Valencia
Duration: 24 Sep 201426 Sep 2014


  • Ethics
  • Responsibility
  • Vaccination


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