Weighing a New Hospital Against Health Risks?

by Jeffrey Caudill, (M.ASCE), Quality Control; Scotty's Contracting & Stone, Inc., Bowling Green, Kentucky,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1997, Vol. 67, Issue 11, Pg. 60-61

Document Type: Feature article


In this Mead award-winning essay, the author sets up a hypothetical situation to portray an ethical dilemma. A fictitious firm is approached to design a badly needed hospital in a Third World country. The company is aware that radioactive waste generated by the hospital will not be properly disposed of and may endanger public health. The question of proceeding is complicated by the town residents' overwhelming support for going ahead with the project, and the developer's refusal to consider a more costly, but safer, system. The author uses the hypothetical construct to argue that the firm should turn down the work based on ethical considerations, and goes on to list other situations which may prove problematic for a company in this type of situation.

Subject Headings: Health hazards | Health care facilities

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