Taking Away The Right Of Privacy Essay — страница 2

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The final condition is the principle of respect. This principle is very large and entails a lot of detail. “Even if it is essential to infringe a person?s rights in order to protect the public health, that person should not be reduced to a mere means to the goal of public health” (Childress 560). These are the five conditions that must be met to infringe the prima facie principles and rules. Childress explains why a mandatory HIV test does not meet all of these conditions and therefore can not be permissible. There are other reasonable alternatives which give less invasive outcomes. Medical counseling or even education will help protect the public health without violating the right to privacy or any other prima facie principles. This is the main point of Childress? essay. He

goes on to discuss mandatory screening under certain circumstances including obtaining a marriage license, having a baby, and being admitted into a hospital. They are just more specific arguments about the same big picture. That is why they are not the focus of my argument. Childress? actual thesis was just that a mandatory HIV test is not permissible. This topic is very confusing in some aspects. A mandatory HIV test can be argued for because it will save many lives and protect the society. It will make people more aware of the gravity of the situation because if everyone must be tested, it must be a very big problem. So, in that aspect, it is a really good idea. But privacy is an enormous issue. If there was mandatory HIV testing, would those results be available to the public?

Would the results be given to people in sexual contact with the patient or even given to the patient?s employer? Because if it was available to some people, that is a complete invasion of privacy and there are laws of confidentiality that this country is envied for. But, if this information was not available to people, would it be of use to take the test in the first place? According to a study of 665 students ages 18 to 25 at colleges in Southern California, the mandatory HIV test without revealing information to relevant people would not do as much good as would be hoped. According to this information, 20 percent of men stated that they would lie about having a negative HIV antibody test, 34 percent of men have told a lie in order to have sex, 60 percent of women have been lied

to in order to have sex, and 47 percent of men, and 43 percent of women would understate the number of previous sexual partners (Cochran and Mays 539-340). This information shows that even if everyone was forced to take an HIV test, if there was no disclosure of information to others to protect the privacy of the HIV positive individual, there is a good chance that the individual will not share that information with people at risk of contracting the disease from him. Another reason the mandatory HIV test would not work as well as it sounds is that HIV can stay in the body without showing up for up to six months. So unless an HIV test was required every six months for the rest of your life, it would not be worth it. If someone has an HIV test and earlier that month contracts HIV,

there is a possibility the test will still come out negative and therefore that person can still infect others without knowing. The discrimination this country has towards people that are different from the “normal” people is extremely harsh. If the information about HIV test were made public, those positive people would have trouble getting jobs and be treated differently by many people. Although there are anti-discrimination laws in place in this country, there are always ways to get around them and it is very difficult to prove the reason for either firing or not hiring was actually discrimination. This is another negative result that a mandatory HIV test with disclosure of information would cause. The above stated arguments against a mandatory HIV test are the reasons I

feel the test should not be obligatory. I completely agree that there are certain principles governing the laws our country can make and in this case make it impermissible to have a mandatory HIV test. Childress makes a very good point. But he misses the details. He argues that the test can not be permissible only for the reason that it does not meet the five conditions to break the prima facie principles. This is a very good point but there are other reasons also. The reasons I mentioned above are the reasons I believe to be more important. I think that Childress believes that a mandatory HIV test would help save lives and make people more aware of their actions, yet he has come to the same realization that I have. It is just not feasible. The way to help combat this epidemic is