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Author Archive: Steve Phillips

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02/15/2017

Is there a compelling reason for germline genetic editing?

Yesterday the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Medicine release the findings of an expert panel on Human Genome Editing. The most significant of their recommendations relate to human germline genetic editing. They recognize that the techniques for doing this are not yet at the point that they can be considered safe enough to do at the present, but make the assumption... // Read More »

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02/08/2017

Caring and risk

One of the basic realities of the medical profession is that caring for the sick may at times involve risk to physicians and others who are providing that care. Sometimes the risk is relatively minor such as when we care for those with minor respiratory infections and may become ill ourselves. That seemed to happen to me every time I was on a pediatrics rotation... // Read More »

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02/01/2017

Lifestyle genetics

A recent article in the Atlantic titled “The DNA Test As Horoscope” discusses the current trend of developing nonmedical DNA tests. I had already been somewhat skeptical of the consumer DNA tests purporting to help people to find their ancestry and those giving people a general health profile without the burden of specific genetic counseling, but I was not aware that a person could pay... // Read More »

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01/18/2017

Rural health and hope

A recent report from the CDC discussing the higher mortality rates in rural versus urban areas in the US caught my eye since I practice in a very rural area. The county where I practice is one of the most rural and poorest counties in Indiana. The report says that age related death rates due to five of the leading causes of mortality; heart disease,... // Read More »

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01/04/2017

The inconsistency of many who reject human dignity

I just finished reading Richard Weikart’s new book, The Death of Humanity: And the Case for Life. Weikart is a professor of history at California State University, Stanislaus and has presented several papers at CBHD summer conferences. His latest book looks at how western culture has lost an understanding of the concept of human dignity and the value of human life. He details the historical... // Read More »

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12/22/2016

Implications of the incarnation

As I systematically read through the Bible, but at a much slower pace than those who read through the Bible in a year, my reading of Scripture is frequently out of sync with the seasons of the church calendar. This Advent I have been reading through the last chapters of the gospel of Luke which include Jesus trying to get his followers to understand that... // Read More »

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12/14/2016

Pushing the IVF ethical envelop

When we discuss IVF in the Medical Ethics class that I teach we talk about the concern that IVF opens up the possibility of doing things that are at best morally questionable. There are also concerns that IVF fundamentally alters how children are created and should not be done under any circumstances, but many of my students are not ready to go that far. They... // Read More »

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11/23/2016

Christian ethics and the powerless

The recent political campaign and election week have had many of us thinking about politics and government. For those of us who look at bioethics from a biblical perspective we have had to think about how our perspective on moral issues affects public policy and how we as a people govern ourselves. What do we do when no one seems to support a public policy... // Read More »

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10/12/2016

A Canadian physician’s defense of rights of conscience

A friend who teaches at the University of Toronto recently made me aware of what Ewan Goligher has written about rights of conscience in the context of the legalization of physician assisted death in Canada and the push by many there to require physicians provide effective referral for physician assisted death. Dr. Goligher is an academic physician who specializes in internal medicine and intensive care... // Read More »

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09/28/2016

The cost-effectiveness of prenatal screening for Down syndrome

Because the British National Health Service is a governmental single-payer system decisions about what is covered in that system involve public discussion. That leads to public discussion of ethical issues that frequently manage to avoid the public eye in the US. A recent article in the Daily Mail talks about an issue that is being debated by the British NHS. They are currently deciding whether... // Read More »

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