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Hope or despair: a response to ‘Do not despair about severity—yet’
  1. Daniel Hausman
  1. Department of Philosophy, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI 53711, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Daniel Hausman, Department of Philosophy, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI 53711, USA; dhausman{at}


This is a brief response to ‘Do not despair about severity—yet’ by Barra et al. It argues that they have no serious criticisms of Daniel Hausman’s essay, ‘The Significance of Severity’” and that indeed their work lends further support to his view that there is no justification for prioritising severity. As policy-akers, Barra and his coauthors are more constrained by popular attitudes, which apparently favour prioritising severity.

  • allocation of health care resources
  • ethics
  • health care economics
  • philosophy of medicine

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  • Contributors DMH is the sole contributor.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

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