When ethics committees evaluate the research proposals submitted to them by biomedical scientists, they can seek guidance from laws and regulations, their own beliefs, values and experiences, and from the theories of philosophers. The starting point of this paper is that philosophers can only be helpful to the members of ethics committees if they take into account in their models both the basic moral intuitions that most of us share and the consequences of people's choices. A moral view which can be labelled as a consequentialist interpretation of mid-level principlism is developed, defended and applied to some real-life and hypothetical research proposals.
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