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Re: The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented [#permalink]
VeritasKarishma

In reference to your explanation of option A:

Further to your reasoning, can we also say that option A does not provide any new information per se?

The essence of option A is actually covered in the passage "Since the lives and health of people in future generations may depend on treatments that are currently experimental, ....."




VeritasKarishma wrote:
sairam595 wrote:
GMAT® Official Guide 2017

Practice Question
Question No.: CR 629
Page: 534

The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented by a shortage of human subjects for the clinical trials needed to show that the drugs are safe and effective. Since the lives and health of people in future generations may depend on treatments that are currently experimental, practicing physicians are morally in the wrong when, in the absence of any treatment proven to be effective, they fail to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials.

Which of the following, if true, casts most doubt on the conclusion of the argument?

(A) Many drugs undergoing clinical trials are intended for the treatment of conditions for which there is currently no effective treatment.

(B) Patients do not share the physician’s professional concern for public health, but everyone has a moral obligation to alleviate suffering when able to do so.

(C) Usually, half the patients in a clinical trial serve as a control group and receive a nonactive drug in place of the drug being tested.

(D) An experimental drug cannot legally be made available to patients unless those patients are subjects in clinical trials of the drug.

(E) Physicians have an overriding moral and legal duty to care for the health and safety of their current patients.

Clinical Trials

Step 1: Identify the Question

The wording casts doubt on in the question stem indicates that this is a Weaken the Argument question.

Step 2: Deconstruct the Argument

Too few human subjs for clinical trials → new drugs can’t go to market

New drugs needed for future gens.

© Drs don’t encourage trial subjs (if no other treatment) → morally wrong

Step 3: Pause and State the Goal

In a Weaken problem, the right answer will make the conclusion less likely to be true. In this argument, the conclusion is that doctors are morally in the wrong if they do not encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials. This conclusion can be rephrased to state that doctors have a moral obligation to encourage patients to volunteer for trials. The right answer will suggest that this is not the case—that doctors are not morally obligated to encourage patients to volunteer. The right answer will most likely accomplish this by showing that there are negative consequences to encouraging patients to volunteer, and that these might outweigh the moral imperative.

Step 4: Work from Wrong to Right

(A) According to the conclusion, physicians are only morally required to recommend trial participation if there is no other effective treatment. This answer choice suggests that this will be the case for many patients. However, knowing that a doctor might be able to recommend trial participation to many patients doesn’t clarify whether that doctor is morally obligated to do so.

(B) The answer choice states that everyone is morally obligated to alleviate suffering. This actually strengthens the conclusion, since if everyone is obligated to alleviate suffering, doctors should be no exception.

(C) This is a tempting answer choice because it relates to real-world concerns surrounding clinical trials. If a patient receives the control drug, he or she might not receive any benefit from participating in the trial. However, the argument specifically claims that physicians should recommend trial participation because of the benefit to future generations, not because of potential benefit to the trial patients themselves. Even though personal benefit is a concern to the patients, since the argument only deals with benefit for others, information about personal benefit does not affect the conclusion.

(D) This answer choice suggests that enrolling patients in a clinical trial is sometimes the only way for those patients to acquire necessary medication. However, the argument specifically claims that physicians should recommend trial participation because of the benefit to future generations, not because of potential benefit to the trial patients themselves. Even though personal benefit is a concern to the patients, since the argument only deals with benefit for others, information about personal benefit does not affect the conclusion. Even if the conclusion dealt with personal benefit, this answer choice would strengthen it, rather than weakening it, because it would suggest that doctors should encourage their sick patients to enroll in trials.

(E) CORRECT. The argument states that the purpose of clinical trials is to show that the drugs are safe and effective. Thus, if a drug is being tested in a clinical trial, it is not definitively known whether it is safe and/or effective. Taking these drugs, therefore, involves accepting at least some risk to health or safety.

The answer choice states that physicians have an overriding responsibility to care for the health and safety of their current patients. That is, the health and safety of their current patients takes precedence over moral imperatives that only relate to future generations. It follows that a doctor should not necessarily encourage a current patient to participate in a clinical trial solely for the benefit of future patients, since participation might cause some risk to the current patient, and that is more important than the health of future patients.

Argument Evaluation

Situation A shortage of human subjects for clinical trials needed to show that new drugs are safe and effective often prevents those drugs from being introduced into the market. The lives and health of future generations may depend on treatments that are now experimental.

Reasoning What would cast doubt on the judgment that doctors are morally obligated to encourage their patients to volunteer for clinical trials? Note that the argument's conclusion, unlike its premises, is a moral judgment. This judgment could be cast into doubt by a moral principle that would be likely to conflict with it under the conditions described. For example, a principle suggesting that it is sometimes morally unacceptable for doctors to encourage their patients to volunteer for clinical trials would also suggest that they are not morally obligated to encourage their patients to volunteer for clinical trials, since anything morally obligatory must also be morally acceptable.

(A) If anything, this highlights how important it is to ensure that these drugs undergo clinical trials to benefit future generations, so it supports rather than casts doubt on the argument's conclusion.

(B) This suggests that patients are morally obligated to volunteer for clinical trials to help prevent suffering in future generations. If anything, this supports the claim that doctors are morally obligated to encourage their patients to volunteer.

(C) The clinical trial will probably not harm any patients in the control group, yet their participation will benefit future generations. So, if anything, this supports the claim that doctors should encourage their patients to volunteer.

(D) This legal barrier makes it even more essential for the drugs to undergo clinical trials in order to benefit patients, so it supports rather than casts doubt on the argument's conclusion.

(E) Correct. Since the experimental drugs' safety is being tested during the trials, the drugs may prove unsafe for subjects in the trials. If doctors have an overriding moral duty to keep their current patients safe, then it may be morally unacceptable for them to encourage those patients to volunteer for the trials.


The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented by a shortage of human subjects for the clinical trials needed to show that the drugs are safe and effective.
Lives and health of people in future generations may depend on these new drugs

Conclusion: Practicing physicians are morally in the wrong when, in the absence of any treatment proven to be effective, they fail to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials.

The argument says that new drugs do not find enough human subjects for effectiveness and safety tests. This puts future generations at risk. So doctors should encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials. Here is the problem - these new drugs need to be tested for safety. When doctors encourage their patients to volunteer for trials, they are putting their patients at risk. For new drugs, it is not known whether their benefits outweigh risks or risks outweigh benefits. Since their safety has not been established, the patients are at risk. The point is - would you risk current generation for the benefit of future generation?

Let's look at the options to find which one weakens the argument.

(A) Many drugs undergoing clinical trials are intended for the treatment of conditions for which there is currently no effective treatment.

If anything, this helps our argument. These new drugs are needed since currently there is no effective treatment for these conditions.

(B) Patients do not share the physician’s professional concern for public health, but everyone has a moral obligation to alleviate suffering when able to do so.

Again, this preaches to the current patients to undergo new drug trials.

(C) Usually, half the patients in a clinical trial serve as a control group and receive a nonactive drug in place of the drug being tested.

Irrelevant how the actual trials take place. Half the patients are still put at risk.

(D) An experimental drug cannot legally be made available to patients unless those patients are subjects in clinical trials of the drug.

If anything, it helps our argument that patients should undergo clinical trials if they want the new drugs. They cannot obtain the new drugs without undergoing clinical trials.

(E) Physicians have an overriding moral and legal duty to care for the health and safety of their current patients.

Correct. This weakens our argument that physicians should encourage their patients to undergo drug trials. Physicians have a duty to care for current patients so they cannot put their current patients health at risk but encouraging them to try untested drugs.

Answer (E)
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Re: The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented [#permalink]
[quote="sairam595"]The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented by a shortage of human subjects for the clinical trials needed to show that the drugs are safe and effective. Since the lives and health of people in future generations may depend on treatments that are currently experimental, practicing physicians are morally in the wrong when, in the absence of any treatment proven to be effective, they fail to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials.

Which of the following, if true, casts most doubt on the conclusion of the argument?

(A) Many drugs undergoing clinical trials are intended for the treatment of conditions for which there is currently no effective treatment.

(B) Patients do not share the physician’s professional concern for public health, but everyone has a moral obligation to alleviate suffering when able to do so.

(C) Usually, half the patients in a clinical trial serve as a control group and receive a nonactive drug in place of the drug being tested.

(D) An experimental drug cannot legally be made available to patients unless those patients are subjects in clinical trials of the drug.

(E) Physicians have an overriding moral and legal duty to care for the health and safety of their current patients.

override:
1) be more important than
2) use one's authority to reject or cancel a decision, view, etc.
premises:
1) The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented by a shortage of human subjects for the clinical trials needed to show that the drugs are safe and effective.
2) Since the lives and health of people in future generations may depend on treatments that are currently experimental, in the absence of any treatment proven to be effective, they fail to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials
conclusion: practicing physicians are morally in the wrong
A) opposite answer, this helps our argument. These new drugs are needed since currently there is no effective treatment for these conditions.
B) opposite answer, patients can accept to be volunteer, then the physicians should be responsible for the fail
C) out of scope, this argument cannot explain whether the physicians are morally wrong or not
D) out of scope, the same as C
E) conditional reasoning, failed to encourage patients to be volunteers> wrong
this argument: other duty>failed to encourage patients to be volunteers> not wrong
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Re: The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented [#permalink]
sairam595 wrote:
The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented by a shortage of human subjects for the clinical trials needed to show that the drugs are safe and effective. Since the lives and health of people in future generations may depend on treatments that are currently experimental, practicing physicians are morally in the wrong when, in the absence of any treatment proven to be effective, they fail to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials.

Which of the following, if true, casts most doubt on the conclusion of the argument?


(A) Many drugs undergoing clinical trials are intended for the treatment of conditions for which there is currently no effective treatment.
If there are no effective means then there is a obligation for the doctors to encourage for clinical tests to bring in a effective drug

(B) Patients do not share the physician’s professional concern for public health, but everyone has a moral obligation to alleviate suffering when able to do so.
This doesn't have impact on whether the doctor is upholding the moral obligation therefore out

(C) Usually, half the patients in a clinical trial serve as a control group and receive a nonactive drug in place of the drug being tested.
This doesn't impact the morality of the physician the slightest therefore out

(D) An experimental drug cannot legally be made available to patients unless those patients are subjects in clinical trials of the drug.
This simply restating the premise given in the passage which we don't require therefore out

(E) Physicians have an overriding moral and legal duty to care for the health and safety of their current patients.
This definitely the physician is concerned about the current patients rather than the benefits of the future patients therefore out

Therefore IMO E
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Re: The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented [#permalink]
The first step is to identify the conclusion:
Practicing physicians are morally in the wrong when, in the absence of any treatment proven to be effective, they fail to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials.

What are we looking for? We're looking for an answer choice that would cast doubt on the idea that practicing physicians are morally wrong when they fail to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials.

A - doesn't impact conclusion.
B - out of scope. We're concerned with practicing physicians, not patients.
C - doesn't impact conclusion.
D - doesn't impact conclusion.
E - CORRECT. If physicians have an overriding moral and legal duty to care for the health of their current patients, then the idea that practicing physicians are morally wrong is weakened.

Choices A - D can quickly be eliminated if we understand what the question is asking for. Answer is E.
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Re: The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented [#permalink]
hello experts,

I am still confused with B (I chose B)
first, practicing physicians are morally in the wrong - i think the author wants to say that the physicians are doing wrong morally because they are not encouraging suitable patient. this is what I understood from the argument.

B says (other half, first one is about patients seems irrelevent)- EVERYONE has an obligation to alleviate suffering when possible. physicians also come under "everyone".
so may be their patients are suffering and the physicians want to alleviate the suffering,so they are not encouraging them.
hence they are not morally wrong. they want to ellivate suffering. looks like a weakner.

why its wrong? did I misunderstood it? morally wrong and morally obligated are same? I am so confused!!

I am doing bad in weakening types in general, what should I do?
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Re: The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented [#permalink]
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dcoolguy wrote:
hello experts,

I am still confused with B (I chose B)
first, practicing physicians are morally in the wrong - i think the author wants to say that the physicians are doing wrong morally because they are not encouraging suitable patient. this is what I understood from the argument.

B says (other half, first one is about patients seems irrelevent)- EVERYONE has an obligation to alleviate suffering when possible. physicians also come under "everyone".
so may be their patients are suffering and the physicians want to alleviate the suffering,so they are not encouraging them.
hence they are not morally wrong. they want to ellivate suffering. looks like a weakner.

why its wrong? did I misunderstood it? morally wrong and morally obligated are same? I am so confused!!

I am doing bad in weakening types in general, what should I do?

Let's start by nailing down the author's conclusion in his or her exact words: "practicing physicians are morally in the wrong when, in the absence of any treatment proven to be effective, they fail to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials."

Now that we've done that, here's (B) again:

Quote:
Which of the following, if true, casts most doubt on the conclusion of the argument?

(B) Patients do not share the physician’s professional concern for public health, but everyone has a moral obligation to alleviate suffering when able to do so.

As you say, "everyone" includes doctors. So IF doctors are not encouraging suitable patients to volunteer because they want to prevent suffering, this would cast doubt on the conclusion.

But keep in mind that we have no reason to think that doctors are not encouraging suitable patients to volunteer in order to alleviate suffering. In fact, we have no idea why doctors are not encouraging suitable patients to volunteer. Maybe it's because the doctors are lazy? Maybe it's because they don't know about the clinical trials?

Bottom line: there could be many reasons why physicians are not encouraging suitable patients to volunteer. Since the passage doesn't tell us, however, we definitely can't assume it's in order to alleviate suffering. And because we can't make that assumption, (B) does not cast doubt on the argument.

If you're curious about our approach CR in general, feel free to check out our beginners guide to CR here.

I hope that helps!
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The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented [#permalink]
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sairam595 wrote:
The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented by a shortage of human subjects for the clinical trials needed to show that the drugs are safe and effective. Since the lives and health of people in future generations may depend on treatments that are currently experimental, practicing physicians are morally in the wrong when, in the absence of any treatment proven to be effective, they fail to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials.

Which of the following, if true, casts most doubt on the conclusion of the argument?

(A) Many drugs undergoing clinical trials are intended for the treatment of conditions for which there is currently no effective treatment.

(B) Patients do not share the physician’s professional concern for public health, but everyone has a moral obligation to alleviate suffering when able to do so.

(C) Usually, half the patients in a clinical trial serve as a control group and receive a nonactive drug in place of the drug being tested.

(D) An experimental drug cannot legally be made available to patients unless those patients are subjects in clinical trials of the drug.

(E) Physicians have an overriding moral and legal duty to care for the health and safety of their current patients.


The question wants us to identify the option that doubts the conclusion. So our first goal is to find the purpose and conclusion of the argument. The general purpose is to get patients to join drug trials because it's the morally correct thing to do. The conclusion is "they(doctors) fail to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials". So what will cast the most doubt on the conclusion? The option should focus on a reason why doctors wouldn't recommend patients for clinical drug trials.

A, B, C and D don't mention a reason related to doctor's not recommending patients for a trial.

E is the only option that mentions a doctor's reason to not recommend a patient for a clinical drug trial.
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Re: The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented [#permalink]
(A) Many drugs undergoing clinical trials are intended for the treatment of conditions for which there is currently no effective treatment. This answer choice does not cast doubt on the conclusion of the argument. It does not address the argument's claim that physicians have a moral obligation to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials.

(B) Patients do not share the physician’s professional concern for public health, but everyone has a moral obligation to alleviate suffering when able to do so. This answer choice does not address the argument's claim that physicians have a moral obligation to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials. Furthermore, it is not clear how this claim is relevant to the argument.

(C) Usually, half the patients in a clinical trial serve as a control group and receive a nonactive drug in place of the drug being tested. This answer choice does not cast doubt on the conclusion of the argument. It does not address the argument's claim that physicians have a moral obligation to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials.

(D) An experimental drug cannot legally be made available to patients unless those patients are subjects in clinical trials of the drug. This answer choice does not cast doubt on the conclusion of the argument. It supports the argument's claim that clinical trials are necessary before drugs can be made available to patients, but it does not address the argument's claim that physicians have a moral obligation to encourage suitable patients to volunteer for clinical trials.

(E) Physicians have an overriding moral and legal duty to care for the health and safety of their current patients. This answer choice casts doubt on the conclusion of the argument. It suggests that physicians may have a greater obligation to their current patients than to future patients who might benefit from new treatments. If this is true, then physicians may not be morally obligated to encourage their current patients to participate in clinical trials. Therefore, option E casts the most doubt on the conclusion of the argument
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Re: The introduction of new drugs into the market is frequently prevented [#permalink]
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