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Author Archive: Blog Editor

11/15/2017

Communicating about cancer: a need for a closer look at Patient Empowerment

This post is written in response to Ubel, Scherr and Fagerlin’s target article, “Empowerment Failure: How Shortcomings in Physician Communication Unwittingly Undermine Patient Autonomy” published in the November 2017 issue of The American Journal of Bioethics.


by Jonas Landers, MA

Ubel and colleagues describe what is obvious from much other academic and non-academic literature: Patient empowerment (PE) receives much attention – today and already for quite some time. This is true for PE not only regarding cancer, but particularly chronic conditions that require continuous efforts by those affected to deal with their situation. While both the attention for PE as well as its relevance are high, the authors rightly point towards its shortcomings in practice, i.e.…

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11/14/2017

Re-structuring the patient-provider communication process to empower patients

This post is written in response to Ubel, Scherr and Fagerlin’s target article, “Empowerment Failure: How Shortcomings in Physician Communication Unwittingly Undermine Patient Autonomy” published in the November 2017 issue of The American Journal of Bioethics.


by Susanne B. Haga, PhD

Most professional organizations have recommended a shift towards greater patient empowerment and shared decision-making. The result has been a data dump: An increase in the amount of information disclosed to patients.  For example, discussion of a prostate cancer diagnosis may include the grading and scoring, followed by discussion of three possible interventions, the risks and benefits of each, and information regarding recurrence rate, probability of adverse responses, costs, lost work time, follow-up care, and other information.…

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11/13/2017

Teaching Better Communication: A Bootcamp Experience

This post is written in response to Ubel, Scherr and Fagerlin’s target article, “Empowerment Failure: How Shortcomings in Physician Communication Unwittingly Undermine Patient Autonomy” published in the November 2017 issue of The American Journal of Bioethics.


by Haavi Morreim, JD, PhD and Mark C. Bugnitz, MD

Communication is one of the most important skillsets in healthcare. As Ubel et al. describe in their American Journal of Bioethics article so well, inadequate communication can effectively deprive patients of the medical path that best fits with their personal goals and values – potentially leaving them, as in the example of prostate cancer, with an outcome that may be deeply dissatisfying.…

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This entry was posted in OPC, Uncategorized. Posted by Blog Editor. Bookmark the permalink.

11/10/2017

Refocusing professional standards and leadership for patient empowerment

This post is written in response to Ubel, Scherr and Fagerlin’s target article, “Empowerment Failure: How Shortcomings in Physician Communication Unwittingly Undermine Patient Autonomy” published in the November 2017 issue of The American Journal of Bioethics.


by Stuart W Grande, PhD, MPA and William A. Nelson, PhD

Overcoming barriers to successful patient empowerment at the point of care is critical to improved patient-provider communications and ultimately to the realization of the dream of preference-sensitive care. In their recent article, “Empowerment Failure: How Shortcomings in Physician Communication Unwittingly Undermine Patient Autonomy,” Ubel and colleagues provide a provocative and engaging commentary on the “failures” of physicians to cultivate an organizational culture and clinical profession where true co-production can occur.…

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This entry was posted in Cultural, Featured Posts, Health Care, Justice, OPC, professional ethics and tagged , . Posted by Blog Editor. Bookmark the permalink.

11/09/2017

To Whom Do Children Belong?

This post also appears in the November 2017 issue of the American Journal of Bioethics. 

by John Lantos, Ph.D.

In this issue of AJOB, Navin and Wasserman (2017) argue that parents should have more discretion in clinical decision making than they currently do. They criticize the Committee on Bioethics of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) for curtailing parental discretion.

Many commentators thought, instead, that the AAP got it just right. Bester and Kodish (2017) argue that decisions for children should not be guided by an assumption that parents are always right but by “the important fiduciary obligation that doctors have to focus primarily on what is best for their patient.” They worry that the approach of Navin and Wasserman opens the door to exploitation, abuse, or neglect.…

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This entry was posted in Editorial-AJOB, Featured Posts, Pediatrics, Philosophy & Ethics, Politics. Posted by Blog Editor. Bookmark the permalink.

10/20/2017

ASBH Lifetime Achievement Award 2017-Myra Christopher

bioethics.net is proud to present this live release of the talks given by the 2017 ASBH Lifetime Achievement Award honorees. If you are at the ASBH Meeting, you can read along; if you were unable to attend, then you can see their talks here. Please join us in congratulating these luminaries who have contributed significantly to the field of bioethics.

ASBH Lifetime Achievement Award-2017
Bioethics and an Ethics of Solidarity
Myra Christopher
Kathleen M. Foley Chair Pain and Palliative Care, Center for Practical Bioethics
Director of PAINS (Pain Action Alliance to Implement a National Strategy)

Myra Christopher

When Amy Haddad told me that I would receive this award, I told her that I was honored and stunned. …

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This entry was posted in Ethics, Featured Posts, Health Care and tagged . Posted by Blog Editor. Bookmark the permalink.

10/12/2017

Justice and Bioethics: Who Should Finance Academic Publishing?

by Udo Schuklenk (Joint Editor in Chief) & David Magnus (Editor in Chief)
We applaud Chattopadhyay, Muyser, Moxham & DeVries on their article, “A Question of Social Justice: How Policies of Profit Negate Engagement of Developing World Bioethicsts and Undermine Bioethicists” for tackling an important and often neglected topic in bioethics: the challenges that our under-resourced colleagues face in conducting research and contributing to the literature in bioethics. Indeed, one of us (U.S.) has spent a good deal of his career attempting to draw attention to this problem and ameliorate it.

Though we are sympathetic to the concerns raised in their article there are several issues that have not been adequately addressed.…

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This entry was posted in Editorial-AJOB, Featured Posts, Global Ethics, Justice, Research Ethics, Social Justice. Posted by Blog Editor. Bookmark the permalink.

10/12/2017

The Rescinding of DACA: What Should Healthcare Professionals and Academics Do? (And Why?)

by Mark G. Kuczewski, Ph.D. Danish Zaidi, MTS, MBE

Imagine that the 14th Amendment is repealed. Suddenly, birthright citizenship is no longer the accepted law of the United States. African-Americans become largely seen as non-citizens because many of their ancestors’ mode of forced entry into the United States (i.e., via slave ship). As non-citizens without valid immigration papers, they can no longer be lawfully employed and are denied routine opportunities in most states such as being able to obtain a driver’s license. This population is excluded from all government “benefits:” They cannot obtain a federal student loan and they cannot purchase a health insurance policy on the exchanges created by the Affordable Care Act.…

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09/06/2017

Response to the Common Rule Special Issue: Attention to Health Disparities

by Nicolle K. Strand, JD, MBioethics, and Nora Jones, PhD

The article and commentaries on recent revisions to the Common Rule published in the July 2017 issue of AJOB are missing, we believe, a key perspective. The target articles and open peer commentaries suggested strategies for revising or overhauling the Common Rule to best address subject protections in light of the new and unique features of our contemporary research landscape, including the move from prospective research to research using existing data and biospecimens, personalized medicine, the increase in international collaboration, and the uptick in data sharing across institutions. Suggestions included encouraging federal regulators to revisit the regulations more often and bringing more stakeholders to the regulatory conversations.…

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08/23/2017

We Can and Must Rebuild the Bridges of Interdisciplinary Bioethics

by Darryl R. J. Macer

This editorial is made available on bioethics.net. The editorial along with the target article and open peer commentary is available via tandfonline.com

Although we can argue that bioethics is holistic and found in every culture, and still alive among people of many indigenous communities as well as the postmodern ones, the academic discipline of bioethics as interpreted by many scholars has attempted to burn bridges to both different views and to persons with different life trajectories and training. The bridges between different cultural and epistemological foundations of bioethics have also been strained by the dominance of Western paradigms of principlism and the emergence of an academic profession of medical bioethics.…

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