Beyond the Metal Flesh: Understanding the Intersection between Bio- and AI Ethics for Robotics in Healthcare

Auxane Boch, Seamus Ryan, Alexander Kriebitz, Lameck Mbangula Amugongo, Christoph Lütge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


As we look towards the future of healthcare, integrating Care Robots (CRs) into health systems is a practical approach to address challenges such as an ageing population and caregiver shortages. However, ethical discussions about the impact of CRs on patients, caregivers, healthcare systems, and society are crucial. This normative research seeks to define an integrative and comprehensive ethical framework for CRs, encompassing a wide range of AI-related issues in healthcare. To build the framework, we combine principles of beneficence, non-maleficence, autonomy, justice, and explainability by integrating the AI4People framework for a Good AI Society and the traditional bioethics perspective. Using the integrated framework, we conduct an ethical assessment of CRs. Next, we identify three key ethical trade-offs and propose remediation strategies for the technology. Finally, we offer design recommendations for responsible development and usage of CRs. In conclusion, our research highlights the critical need for sector-specific ethical discussions in healthcare to fully grasp the potential implications of integrating AI technology.

Original languageEnglish
Article number110
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2023


  • AI ethics
  • bioethics
  • care robots
  • healthcare


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