Case study-marketing a new procedure


The following case study illustrates some difficult ethical issues hospital marketers face on the job. When deciding on the best way to confront these "gray" ethical areas, hospitals marketers should use these questions as a guide:

- What are the hospital's objectives in implementing this plan?

- Will this marketing activity contribute to the public good, or is it merely self-serving?

- Are promotional efforts truthful in all aspects?

- Are marketing efforts not only legal, but fair to the public?

- Do the means justify the end? That is, can results be supported based on the ethical correctness of the process?

Case Study: Marketing a new procedure.

The administrator of a successful hospital is approached by an attending physician who has recently attended a seminar on a new out patient procedure that is stated to be quick and profitable. However, the procedure is still considered experimental, and some conservative authorities regard it to be of questionable value. The physician would like to offer this new procedure and promote it with an extensive media campaign. A majority of the medical staff sees no problem. The administrator has doubts. While the administrator is not a physician and would not attempt to evaluate a clinical procedure, she is concerned about promoting a procedure such as this one.

What should the administrator do?

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