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Should US Physicians Support the Decriminalization of Commercial Sex?

Overview of attention for article published in The AMA Journal of Ethic, January 2017
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Mentioned by

1 news outlet
34 tweeters


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Readers on

10 Mendeley
Should US Physicians Support the Decriminalization of Commercial Sex?
Published in
The AMA Journal of Ethic, January 2017
DOI 10.1001/journalofethics.2017.19.1.sect1-1701
Pubmed ID

According to the World Health Organization, "commercial sex" is the exchange of money or goods for sexual services, and this term can be applied to both consensual and nonconsensual exchanges. Some nonconsensual exchanges qualify as human trafficking. Whether the form of commercial sex that is also known as prostitution should be decriminalized is being debated contentiously around the world, in part because the percentage of commercial sex exchanges that are consensual as opposed to nonconsensual, or trafficked, is unknown. This paper explores the question of decriminalization of commercial sex with reference to the bioethical principles of beneficence, nonmaleficence, and respect for autonomy. It concludes that though there is no perfect policy solution to the various ethical problems associated with commercial sex that can arise under either criminalized or decriminalized conditions, the Nordic model offers several potential advantages. This model criminalizes the buying of sex and third-party brokering of sex (i.e., pimping) but exempts sex sellers (i.e., prostitutes, sex workers) from criminal penalties. However, ongoing support for this type of policy should be contingent upon positive results over time.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 34 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 10 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 10 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Master 3 30%
Student > Bachelor 2 20%
Student > Ph. D. Student 2 20%
Student > Doctoral Student 2 20%
Other 1 10%
Other 0 0%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 3 30%
Unspecified 2 20%
Medicine and Dentistry 2 20%
Nursing and Health Professions 2 20%
Psychology 1 10%
Other 0 0%