Complicit Care: Health Care in Community
We intuitively think and talk about health care as a human right. Moreover, we tend to talk about health in the language of basic rights or human rights without a clear sense of what such rights mean, let alone whose duty it is to fulfill them. Additionally, in the care ethics literature, we tend to think of a dividing line between care and justice. In this dissertation I aim to draw care and justice together in what I call “care justice.” To attend to care justice requires the reconceptualization of the value and practice of health care, and of the moral communities in which we enact care and justice. First, I argue for a strong right to health care, though not to health. Second, I argue that health care includes much more than mere medical care. On this account health care is special for the practices of care it values and communicates. Third, I establish a theoretical framework for why, and importantly how, health care entails other forms of care: social, economic and political. My approach engages a complicity framework to rethink moral community formation and participation, and the rights and responsibilities of individuals as participants in a collective moral community. I argue that it is within communities of membership, which I define as “ethical homes,” that we have duties to and expectations from others. The moral community as complicit ethical home provides a way to reimagine individual shared responsibility within moral communities, and particularly regarding responsibility for practices of care.