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Medical research, care should not be driven solely by profit, Pope says

April 29, 2016

In an April 29 address to participants in a Vatican conference on regenerative medicine, Pope Francis voiced his concern that some people, suffering from unusual diseases, do not receive proper care "because investing in them is not expected to produce substantial economic returns."

In his address the Pope suggested that the conference participants should focus attention on three aspects of medical care and research:

First, the Pontiff called for "increasing sensitivity" to the needs of those who are ill, and "greater empathy in society." Even if a cure is not available, he said, the sick should not feel abandoned.

Second, the Pope spoke about the need for ethical research in pursuit of cures. "Research," he said, "whether in academe or industry, requires unwavering attention to moral issues if it is to be an instrument which safeguards human life and the dignity of the person."

Finally the Pope underlined the need for "ensuring access to care." In that regard, again, he urged the faithful to "oppose an economy of exclusion and inequality that victimize people when the mechanism of profit prevails over the value of human life."

 
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