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(eth′ĭ-kăl) 1. Pert. to or in accord with ethics, i.e., to principles that foster right standards of conduct. 2. Pert. to an agent available solely by prescription.

ethical reasoning

(ĕth′ĭ-kĭl) Reasoning about what one ought to do as a guide for what one actually does. SYN: moral reasoning.

ethical review

A formal evaluation of the moral grounding of a proposed academic or research project before it is begun. The review is an attempt to ensure that the research will treat its subjects fairly and safely, without exposing them or society at large to undue risk.

ethical will

A formal but not legally binding document in which individuals relay their blessings, concerns, feelings, regrets, thoughts, moral guidance, or life instructions to others.


(eth′iks) [Gr. ēthikos, pert. to morals] A system of moral principles or standards governing conduct.

applied e. The use of moral principles and reasoning to solve problems that arise in practical fields, such as health care, law, or management.

biomedical e. Moral inquiry into issues raised by health care education, practice, and research.

dental e. A system of principles governing dental practice; a moral obligation to render the best possible quality of dental service to the patient and to maintain an honest relationship with other members of the profession and society at large.

environmental e. The application of moral principles to human (especially commercial or industrial) interactions with nature. It is an important principle of occupational safety and public health because of the potential threats posed to health when biological agents, pollutants, toxins, or other commercial waste products are not carefully managed.

medical e. A system of principles governing medical conduct. It deals with the relationship of a physician to the patient, the patient's family, fellow physicians, and society at large. SEE: advance directive; do not attempt resuscitation; euthanasia; Hippocratic oath; living will.

nursing e. A system of principles governing the conduct of a nurse. Nursing ethics deals with the relationship of a nurse to the patient, the patient's family, associates and fellow nurses, and society at large. SEE: Nightingale Pledge.

ethics committee

Committee, patient care advisory.

Ethics in Patient Referrals Act

ABBR: EPRA. An American federal law that makes it illegal for a physician to refer a patient to a health care facility in which the physician (or a family member) has a financial interest. Also known as the Stark Act.

ethidium bromide

(e-thid′ē-ŭm) A fluorescent dye used to highlight nucleic acids.

ethinyl estradiol


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