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Bioethics news.

Ethicists agree on who gets treated first when hospitals are overwhelmed by coronavirus
As health care systems are overwhelmed with more patients than they can feasibly treat, medical personnel are forced to decide who should get the available ventilators and ICU beds. Quartz spoke with eight ethicists, all of whom agreed that in such dire situations, those who have the best chance of surviving get priority. Despite the unanimity, all agreed that this...
At-home tests for coronavirus are here. Should you take them?
With delays in testing hampering the country’s ability to accurately track the new coronavirus and shelter-in-place orders keeping many Americans at home, startups are swooping in with a seemingly ideal solution: at-home tests
Millions Of Older Americans Live In Counties With No ICU Beds As Pandemic Intensifies
More than half the counties in America have no intensive care beds, posing a particular danger for more than 7 million people who are age 60 and up ― older patients who face the highest risk of serious illness or death from the rapid spread of COVID-19.
Hospitals Need to Cancel Elective Procedures: This is a pandemic – No time for business as usual.
As an anesthesiologist and medical ethicist working on the front lines of this pandemic, I’m keenly aware of the ethical dilemmas facing healthcare workers, like never seen in modern medicine. The COVID-19 pandemic will stress hospital resources to their breaking points.
Doctors Fear Bringing Coronavirus Home: ‘I Am Sort of a Pariah in My Family’
One doctor dreamed he was surrounded by coughing patients. “Most physicians have never seen this level of angst and anxiety in their careers,” a veteran emergency room doctor said.
‘Is Ordering Takeout Unethical?’ A Medical Ethicist Answers Some of the Most Common Moral Questions Around Coronavirus
An epidemic is a test not just of our mettle but our morals. In a time of lockdowns and quarantines, restaurant closings and shuttered schools, the temptation is often to bend the rules, relying on the familiar just-this-once or it-couldn’t-hurt dodge. TIME spoke to Arthur Caplan, director of the Division of Medical Ethics at New York University’s Grossman School of Medicine, about...
An expert guide to social distancing – and what to do if friends and family aren’t onboard
Officials around the world say that “social distancing” is the key to slowing the spread of coronavirus. But does that mean you can have friends over, and what do you do if you live with someone who’s throwing caution to the wind? We asked three experts for their thoughts.
Pandemics: The Ethics of Mandatory and Voluntary Interventions
In pandemics, as we see with the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 and its resulting disease COVID-19, communities have to decide which interventions, if any, to implement before adequate vaccine and antiviral supplies are developed and distributed. These nonpharmaceutical interventions (NPI) encompass traditional public health strategies of isolation and quarantine, school closures, and social distancing measures such as gathering bans, the...
Coronavirus privacy: Are South Korea’s alerts too revealing?
As South Korea battles a snowballing number of Covid-19 cases, the government is letting people know if they were in the vicinity of a patient. But the volume of information has led to some awkward moments and now there is as much fear of social stigma as of illness, as Hyung Eun Kim of BBC News Korean reports.
EU lawmakers are eyeing risk-based rules for AI, per leaked white paper
The European Commission  is considering a temporary ban on the use of facial recognition technology, according to a draft proposal for regulating artificial intelligence. Creating rules to ensure AI  is ‘trustworthy and human’ has been an early flagship policy promise of the new Commission. But the leaked proposal suggests the EU is in fact leaning towards tweaks of existing rules, rather than anything as...
This Is What Pro Sports, Youth Sports And Esports Need To Do To Manage Coronavirus
Golden State Warriors basketball star Steph Curry was recently sidelined with symptoms of new coronavirus. Fortunately, it was a false alarm. Curry turns out to have come down with a case of the flu, the symptoms of which are easily confused with those of the coronavirus. Still, the scare raises a question: What should the outbreak of COVID-19 infections...
Perspectives in Biology and Medicine: Special Issue on CRISPR
A special issue on CRISPR in Perspectives in Biology and Medicine adds to the rich corpus of ideas and arguments that will inform a technology bound to influence generations to come.
Medically Assisted Dying and Suicide: How Are They Different, and How Are They Similar?
The practice of medically assisted dying has long been contentious, and the question of what to call it has become increasingly contentious as well. Particularly among U.S. proponents of legalizing the practice, there has been a growing push away from calling it “physician‐assisted suicide,” with assertions that medically assisted dying is fundamentally different from suicide.
With Test Kits in Short Supply, Health Officials Sound Alarms
Despite efforts by President Trump and others to reassure the public that tests are getting disseminated quickly, several states, doctors and patients complained that access was limited.
Public Trust In Health Authorities Is Key To Fighting Coronavirus — Is It At Risk?
During infectious disease outbreaks, public trust in the government and health agencies becomes critical. Officials need to convince millions of people that they are telling the whole truth, and that their guidance on what to do — and not do — should be followed.
As Coronavirus Numbers Rise, C.D.C. Testing Comes Under Fire
Federal health officials botched an initial diagnostic test and restricted widespread screening. Missteps may have raised the risks to Americans, critics say.
F.C.C. to Fine Cellphone Carriers for Selling Customers’ Locations
The Federal Communications Commission is set to propose about $200 million in fines against four major cellphone carriers for selling customers’ real-time location data, according to three people briefed on the discussions.
‘They lied to us’: Mom says police deceived her to get her DNA and charge her son with murder
A murder case raises the question: Is it OK for police to lie to get an innocent person’s DNA?
Trust, Risk, and Race in American Medicine
There is ample evidence that patient mistrust toward the American medical system is to some extent associated with communal and individual experiences of racism. For groups who have faced exploitation and discrimination at the hands of physicians, the medical profession, and medical institutions, trust is a tall order and, in many cases, would be naive. Nevertheless, trust is often...
WHO’s malaria vaccine study represents a “serious breach of international ethical standards”
Experts are troubled by the apparent lack of informed consent in a large, cluster randomised study of the malaria vaccine.
German Court Overturns Ban on Assisted Suicide
The decision came after a group of doctors, patients and proponents sued, arguing that a 2015 law infringed on their constitutional right to make decisions about their own lives.
Canada opens door to expanding assisted dying
The Canadian government has put forward a bill to make medically-assisted death available to people who are not terminally ill. The bill opens the door to allowing Canadians with degenerative illnesses like cerebral palsy to seek medically-assisted death.
Who Decides? Medical Intervention for Transgender and Intersex Children
Who should decide whether medical intervention on a child’s body is necessary? Ideally, the person who will undergo the treatment should have a say in these decisions. Patients themselves, even if they are children, should understand all their options and assent to whatever procedures are on the table.
‘Open, Insert, Squirt.’ In This Town, Children Are Taught to Administer Narca
In rural Carter County, Tenn., health officials have embraced a strategy for stemming addiction: Teaching children as young as 6 how to reverse an overdose.
‘I brainwashed myself with the internet’
Nearly 45 weeks pregnant, she wanted a “freebirth” with no doctors. Online groups convinced her it would be OK.
Hidden Beneath the Hospital Gown
In contrast to the authority and protection the doctor’s white coat confers, hospital gowns make patients exposed, vulnerable and stripped of their identity.
Globalized Science in a Deglobalizing World
The arrest of Harvard chemist and nanobiologist Charles Lieber on charges of lying about his research funding from China encapsulates two phenomena currently in tension: the global nature of modern science and attempts to nationalize the fruits of science.
Edit Embryo Genome? Ethics Experts Weigh In
You voted, now see the results and expert discussion.
She Didn’t Want a Pelvic Exam. She Received One Anyway.
Medical schools and students are grappling with an unsettling practice: Performing pelvic exams on unconscious, non-consenting patients.
The coronavirus outbreak exposes the U.S.’s pharma supply chain vulnerability
In October 2019, Dr. Janet Woodcock, the director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, testified before Congress that the United States “has become a world leader in drug discovery and development, but is no longer in the forefront of drug manufacturing.” The use of foreign-sourced materials “creates vulnerabilities in the U.S. supply chain,” Woodcock concluded.