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The Ethics of COVID-19 Vaccine Allocation

  • Korean Journal of Medical Ethics
  • Abbr : 의료윤리
  • 2021, 24(2), pp.121-137
  • DOI : 10.35301/ksme.2021.24.2.121
  • Publisher : The Korean Society For Medical Ethics
  • Research Area : Medicine and Pharmacy > General Medicine
  • Received : March 2, 2021
  • Accepted : March 23, 2021
  • Published : June 30, 2021

FANG Yin-Hua 1 Kim, Ock Joo ORD ID 2

1서울대학교 의과대학, 인문의학교실
2서울대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

Border controls and social distancing have proven effective in containing the spread of COVID-19, but the current pandemic will not end until herd immunity is achieved through the widespread use of vaccines. Given the importance of vaccines in overcoming this global health crisis, and the current imbalance between their supply and demand, ethical questions arise concerning how COVID-19 vaccines should be distributed. This article argues that the guiding objectives for the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines should be the reduction of inequality and the maximization of benefits through the use of clear and transparent criteria for vaccine prioritization. Allocating scarce medical resources such as vaccines is a long-term ethical challenge. Only an ethically sound and well-coordinated vaccine distribution plan can ensure fair access for those in need.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.