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Author Archive: Craig Klugman

About Craig Klugman

01/01/2021 “One Last Time”

One Last Time
by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

One of the traditions of this blog has been an end-of-year recap and offering of predictions for the new year. Like most things in 2020, however, this year’s review will be a little different. While I am writing the end of the year post, the look forward is being written by the new co-editors of the blog, Keisha Ray and Alyssa Burgart. 

In 2012, two colleagues and friends arranged a shidduch between myself and David Magnus, editor-in-chief of The American Journal of Bioethics. Before attending graduate school, I had worked for many years as a journalist and thought of bringing that experience into my bioethics activities by writing a blog.  At…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

With COVID-19 shutting down television and film production in the spring, U.S. networks looked north to find new content for their summer and fall schedules. One such Canadian import is the medical drama Transplant. Given the name, I assumed this would be a show about an organ transplant surgical team. However, the new refers to Dr. Bashir Hamed, a trauma surgeon who emigrated to the United States to raise his younger sister and escape the ravages of the Syrian civil war. In other words, Bash is the transplant. While working at a restaurant a car plows through the front window and he performs an impromptu surgery on Dr.…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

In 1862, the Morrill Act provided for the building of land grant universities throughout the country. Their purpose was to make higher education, especially in agriculture and technical arts, available to people who previously would not have had access. With a single act, higher education went from being a pursuit of the elite to an opportunity available to many. However, it was not until the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944 (the GI Bill), that higher education became available to large numbers of people because the cost was covered by the United States government. From 1944-1949, nearly 6 million veterans attended college at a cost of $6 billion to the government.…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

The Good Doctor (Season 4: Episodes 1-3); Chicago Med (Season 6; Episode 1-2);Greys Anatomy (Season 17: Episodes 1-3): The COVID Episodes. 

This spring and summer there was a question about whether there would be a fall television season. The usual busy spring filming season was delayed due to COVID-19 and for some shows, production was canceled. While editing and adding sound can be done remotely, filming multiple actors on a well-known set can only be done in person. With the premiere of many shows, how did the showrunners manage to film in the pandemic? The answers are varied and expected.…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

I just finished watching a press conference with my mayor Lori Lightfoot of Chicago. She announced a new stay-at-home order starting Monday that will last for at least 30 days. Before going into the specifics of what this means, she also announced that Thanksgiving was canceled. No one should be gathering in their home with anyone who is not in their household. Since indoor dining is banned and let’s face it, late November in Chicago is not a time for a picnic, this uniquely American holiday is on a hiatus this year. 

Earlier this week, the CDC recommended (because under the current Administration they do not use more forceful language) that no one travel for Thanksgiving.…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

It is hard to know what to write in the middle of another drawn out ballot counting election in the U.S. I was hoping to write today about what we can expect in terms of health policy and the role of bioethics in our national debates for the next four years. But right now we are potentially still days away from knowing who will be President (despite Trumps’ self-declared, and unsupported win) and who will control the Senate (though leaning toward Republicans). 

Obviously the most pressing issue of our time is responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. With nearly 9.5 million cases in the US and over 233,000 deaths, this virus is not going anywhere soon.…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D

In the last few weeks, you may have heard from central and left-leaning media that Scott Atlas, a radiologist who appears to be leading White House COVID policy, has managed to make “herd immunity” the official federal response to COVID-19.

If you prefer right-leaning media, then you may have heard of the Great Barrington Declaration, an international document led by three scientists that urges against lock downs, quarantine, and isolation, and instead suggests letting young people get COVID to help build herd immunity. “The most compassionate approach that balances the risks and benefits of reaching herd immunity, is to allow those who are at minimal risk of death to live their lives normally to build up immunity to the virus through natural infection, while better protecting those who are at highest risk.

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

In the mythology of the founding of bioethics, we learn that this nascent field sprang whole from the forehead of Zeus to slay the paternalism that was practiced by the children of Apollo. Less dramatically, our founding legends hold that bioethics came into existence in large part to bring a turn to autonomy where the patient was a partner in medical decision-making rather than being am object that a physician treated. Similar to other civil rights movements of the late 1960s/early 1970s, bioethics sought to empower the patient to have a voice and control over their body.…

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by Craig Klugman

In a startling whistleblower report, Dawn Looten who is a licensed nurse practitioner at the Irwin County (GA) Detention Center (ICDC) stated that patients were denied COVID tests, medical records were altered and destroyed, and most disturbingly, that a very high number of hysterectomies were performed on detained immigrant women who may not have understood what was being done to them. Nurse Wooten is represented in this matter by the Government Accountability Project and Project South which spoke to others with knowledge of the prison. A detained immigrant reported on 5 women who had undergone hysterectomies who “reacted confused” about what had been done to them: “When I met all these women who had had surgeries, I thought this was like an experimental concentration camp.

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

Burn-out is a syndrome conceptualized as resulting from chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed. It is characterized by three dimensions: feelings of energy depletion or exhaustion; increased mental distance from one’s job, or feelings of negativism or cynicism related to one’s job; and reduced professional efficacy. – WHO, ICD 11

For the last six months, faculty have been under extraordinary pressure. In my own case, we were given 48 hours to transition to online finals to end one quarter and then had 10 days to move from planned in-person classes to completely on-line versions (a.k.a. …

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