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Author Archive: Craig Klugman

02/10/2016

Chicago Med Files DNR Under X-File

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

This week appears to be advance directive week on television. First, on the rebooted X-Files, Dana Scully finds her mother’s advance directive. Second, on Chicago Med a physician ignores not only a DNR, but a patient’s clearly stated wishes not to be resuscitated. One of these presents a model of a good surrogate decision-maker who respects the patient’s wishes. The other shows an arrogant doctor who blatantly ignores patient autonomy.

The X-Files (Season 10, Episode 4) finds Agent Scully at her mother’s bedside after receiving a call from her brother that their mother is in the hospital.…

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This entry was posted in End of Life Care, Featured Posts, Media and tagged , , , . Posted by Craig Klugman. Bookmark the permalink.

02/09/2016

Is There A Happily Ever After For Medical Humanities & Bioethics?

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

I attended my very first academic conference in 1997, which happened to be the Combined Meeting of the Society for Health and Human Values, American Association of Bioethics, and Society of Bioethics Consultants. I was also in Houston the next year at the very first meeting of the American Society of Bioethics & Humanities. Bioethics and Medical Humanities had married and that was their reception.

This has not been an easy marriage. Some medical humanities scholars have expressed feelings of being slighted, minimized in programs, and not always having a seat at the table. A few in bioethics have expressed concerns that the humanities scholars do not want to play with others and have their own agenda.…

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02/03/2016

A Letter to Dick Wolf & Chicago Med

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

When I was a graduate student in my clinical bioethics masters program I was rotating through a pediatric subspecialty, following a physician. The first half of the day was great. The doctor introduced me to patients, explained what was going on with them, explained his plans and his hopes for each patient. About two-thirds through one particular day he asked me for my stethoscope. I thought “Uh-oh, He doesn’t understand.” When I responded that I did not have one, he said “What kind of medical student are you.” I shrugged my shoulders. When we left that patient’s room I re-explained to him (as I had in my email asking if I could shadow him) that I was a student in the medical school studying clinical ethics, but I was not a medical student.…

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This entry was posted in Clinical Ethics, Featured Posts, Media and tagged , , . Posted by Craig Klugman. Bookmark the permalink.

01/26/2016

The Sky is Falling: How Much Do We Owe A Patient?

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

Imagine if a patient went sky diving without a parachute and survived. You fixed up her body and explained to her the dangers of her activities. You refer her to a program that offers free parachutes and trains people on how to use them. Upon discharge, she does the same thing again and ends up back in your hospital? Do you perform the same surgeris again? What if she does this 3 times? Four times? Is there a point at which we “give up” on patients when they consistently return for the same problem from the same cause after ignoring all advice?…

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This entry was posted in Clinical Ethics, Featured Posts, Health Care. Posted by Craig Klugman. Bookmark the permalink.

01/22/2016

Revised Medical Access Records Guidelines Reinforce Patient Rights

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

A few years ago I moved cross-country for a new job. Among the many moving tasks that I had was getting copies of all my medical records so I could bring those to my new physicians. Although I am very aware of HIPAA taught it in my bioethics and health policy courses for many years, I encountered obstacles to getting these records. Some of the refusals were phrased to my benefit: “If you take them then we have to charge but if we send directly to your new doctor, then there’s no charge;” “We’ll send them to you so you don’t need to carry them” and showed up months later in forwarded mail.…

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This entry was posted in Featured Posts, Health Regulation & Law, Privacy and tagged , , . Posted by Craig Klugman. Bookmark the permalink.

01/20/2016

Putting Patients Before Publicity

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

Imagine if 5 million people learned about your hospital in a week. Would you want your hospital to be featured in a television reality show? Described as “unscripted authentic medical dramas,” such shows follow trauma cases from accident to emergency room. Over 2 seasons, NYMed followed stories at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, Lutheran Medical Center, University Hospital (NJ), and St. Luke’s Roosevelt Hospital. Similar shows include Hopkins, Boston Med, Save My Life: Boston Trauma and Boston EMS. The idea behind these productions was to be a real-life counterpart to successful scripted medical shows like Grey’s Anatomy.

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This entry was posted in Conflict of Interest, Featured Posts, Media, Privacy. Posted by Craig Klugman. Bookmark the permalink.

01/12/2016

Powerball Fever Is Born of Epic Inequality

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

Like many Americans and Canadians, I hold in my hand a ticket for a chance to win to the record $1.5 billion lottery. For a couple of bucks, you can dream: My spouse and I talked about being able to pay off student loans, buy a new house, maybe buy a vineyard in France. The media write articles on the long lines, the high hopes, and how this money will help fund schools and public programs.

My question is why is the idea of winning huge amounts money so attractive that it encourages people in droves to spend their money on a 1 in 292 million chance of winning big?…

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This entry was posted in Cultural, Featured Posts, Media, Politics and tagged , , . Posted by Craig Klugman. Bookmark the permalink.

01/07/2016

Base Gun Policy on Science, Not Rhetoric

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

This year, my university required all instructors to talk about “live shooter” plans in our classes. Although this institution does not permit guns anywhere on campus, we are supposed to be prepared because we live in a world where mass shootings occur in schools and where in more places people carry firearms.

This week, President Obama took executive action to address this public health epidemic. During the press conference, the President announced guidance for federal agencies that fell into three categories: asking Congress for more funds, expanding who is covered under the background check requirements, and greater enforcement of existing laws.…

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01/01/2016

The Year in Bioethics That Was – 2015

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

Happy New Year. As has become a tradition at the bioethics.net blogs, the ending of one year and beginning of another is a time for reflection, for reviewing that year that has passed and planning for the year to come.

In 2015, bioethics.net is pleased to have had 18 bloggers contribute to our 99 posts. A very big thank you to these insightful scholars: Alison Bateman-House, Jennifer Blumenthal-Barby, Arthur Caplan, Nanette Elster, Joseph Fins, Bela Fishbeyn, Ellen Fox, Macey Henderson, Lisa Kearns, Jenna Lillemoe, Kayhan Parsi, Keisha Ray, Jeanie Sauderland, Charles Seife, Adil Shamoo, Christopher Thomas Scott, and Amanda Zink.…

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12/23/2015

A Suggestion To Make Prescription Medicine Behind-the-Counter

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

I recently returned from a vacation to Central America. Besides having some adventures, I also noticed that the local towns had a large number of pharmacies—far more than would be expected of towns with small populations. When I walked into these pharmacies I saw the walls covered with boxes and bottles of medications—drugs that in the U.S. would only have been available with a doctor’s prescription. Some of them were drugs that at home were available over-the-counter in small doses but here one could purchase the prescription dose. Others were antibiotics, erectile dysfunction drugs, anti-depressants, cardiac meds, blood pressure medications, anabolic steroids, and medications for end-stage kidney disease, contraceptive pills and even some pain relievers with small doses of codeine.…

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This entry was posted in Featured Posts, Health Regulation & Law, Pharmaceuticals. Posted by Craig Klugman. Bookmark the permalink.