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01/05/2017

“The [Customer] Patient is Always Right?”

I recently received email notification of the 2016 update of the “Medscape Ethics Report: Life, Death, and Pain.”  Follow the link to view a slide set summarizing the results from 7505 surveyed physicians, 63% of whom were female: Physician-assisted suicide (PAS) for “terminally ill patients”: DOCTORS now favor it, 57%-29%, up from 46%-41% in 2010. The proportion saying “it depends” remains at 14%.  What’s driving... // Read More »

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This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged , , , , , . Posted by Jon Holmlund. Bookmark the permalink.

01/05/2017

Role for Law in Medical Practice at End of Life

In the latest issue of the Journal of Law & Medicine, Lindy Willmott and colleagues discuss the role for law in medical practice.  One respondent colorfully conveyed that law should stay out of the clinical encounter.  

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This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged , . Posted by Thaddeus Mason Pope, JD, PhD. Bookmark the permalink.

01/04/2017

The High Costs of Chasing Immortality

John G. Carney, President and CEO of the Center for Practical Bioethics will present “The High Costs of Chasing Immortality” on January 19, 2017, 4:30 to 5:30 pm CST.

This is part of the Center’s 2017 Bioethics Lecture Series and will be both in person at the Kauffman Conference Center in Kansas City and on Facebook Live.

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This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged , . Posted by Thaddeus Mason Pope, JD, PhD. Bookmark the permalink.

01/04/2017

Last Days of the ACA

by Craig M. Klugman, Ph.D.

Politicians are notorious for making campaign promises and then not carrying them out. With the beginning of the 115th Congress, the GOP has doubled-down on its promise to repeal the Affordable Care Act (aka “Obamacare”). How that repeal will happen and what will replace it remains unknown. Both Congress and the courts are lining up court cases and rules that will set up their destruction of this law that has extended health care insurance to 20 million people in the U.S. Starting January 1, several new provisions were supposed to go into effect including expanding protected class status to include those who identify as transgender and those who had receive abortions, and permitting states to apply for exemptions to design alternative programs.…

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01/04/2017

The High Costs of Chasing Immortality

John G. Carney, MEd
John G. Carney, MEd, President and CEO of the Center, will present a free lecture on “The High Costs of Chasing Immortality” at the Center’s 2017 Bioethics Lecture Series on January 19, 2017, 4:30 to 5:30 pm CST, in person at the Kauffman Conference Center in Kansas City and on Facebook Live. To attend in person, please RSVP to cleyland@practicalbioethics.org.

Americans undoubtedly cherish the science of medicine, whether it be “moonshots” to cure fatal diseases, research to augment our genetic code, or the development of new “breakthrough” drugs for debilitating conditions.


But how good are we at separating the financial considerations and “return on investment” from the human factors involved in living with incurable diseases and chronic conditions? What is the actual cost – in terms of patients’ lives? What is the value of a day, a week, a month of additional life? Who gets to decide? Who pays? Does every life get valued the same? Should it?


This brief but thoughtful inquiry into the personal and societal questions that we face will attempt to narrow the lens of focus to the human considerations involved in prolonging life for those with life-limiting conditions.


-       How should individual responsibilities in managing care be measured?

-       If we are going to shift from a world that pays for services based on their availability to one that measures “success” in terms of outcomes – whose outcomes are we adopting? 


Patient-centered care is designed to give patients a voice – not only in deciding how important it is to pursue a critical path but in deciding what even the goals of care and treatment ought to be. In doing so, we open ourselves up to a whole new set of questions and a shift from the traditional paternalistic approach where “doctor knows best.”


The whys and wherefores of patient and proxy choices at the edge of life may just give us a peek into how valuing patients decisions could change the dialogue about outcomes and goals of care more generally.



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What we may find in exploring our mortal natures is a different kind of answer - or certainly a different set of questions that need to be answered rather than the elusive and costly pursuit of immortality.



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01/04/2017

Ethics, Undocumented Immigrants and the Issue of Integration: Making a Better Life for Everyone in New York City

STUDENT VOICES By: Yohan Garcia This essay is in response to the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs video clip “Nisha Agarwal: IDNYC & the Undocumented Community.”   According to a study conducted by the Migration Policy Institute (MPI), an estimated 643,000 undocumented immigrants live within the five boroughs of New York City. Advocates of the New … More Ethics, Undocumented Immigrants and the Issue of Integration: Making a Better Life for Everyone in New York City

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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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This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged , , , , . Posted by Steve Phillips. Bookmark the permalink.

01/04/2017

Many Physicians Admit Administering Futile Life-Sustaining Therapy

In the annual Medscape Ethics Report, the authors surveyed 7500 physicians from 25 specialties.  Nearly one-quarter said they would "recommend" life-sustaining therapy even if they believed it futile.   Another 36% said "it depends."  T...

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This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged , . Posted by Thaddeus Mason Pope, JD, PhD. Bookmark the permalink.

01/03/2017

ICYMI: The Best of Reflective MedEd 2016

We are taking this opportunity to showcase a few excellent posts from the year gone by.  We invite you to check out these highly popular essays. Mary Boyle, MD, “The Invitation”: A poem and reflection about a patient as teacher https://reflectivemeded.org/2016/04/25/the-invitation/     Guadelupe Garcia McCall, “Popocatepetl and Iztaccihuatl”: A poem about romance, illness, and […]

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01/03/2017

Short Lived Children – Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Photographer Arthur Fink volunteers with Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep, a national network of professional photographers who provide families with baby pictures as they cope with the tragedy of a lost infant.  
Fink calls them “short-lived children,” tiny souls either stillborn or overwhelmed by health complications at the very dawn of life.


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This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged , . Posted by Thaddeus Mason Pope, JD, PhD. Bookmark the permalink.