Tag: bioethics

Blog Posts (83)

August 14, 2014

This week’s WHO statement on Ebola

Earlier this week (Monday, August 11), the WHO convened a panel of ethicists, physicians, scientists, and members of the general public to review the ethics of providing experimental treatments for people afflicted in the current Ebola outbreak.  The WHO issued a brief statement the following day.  The statement itself is a bit sketchy; the WHO said that a (presumably much more detailed) report of the... // Read More »
August 13, 2014

How emerging adults think about morality

Every year around this time Taylor University where I teach and work with the Center for Ethics holds what we call Colleagues College, two days when the faculty gets together to learn about some aspect of teaching in a Christian liberal arts university. This year we are focusing on the characteristics of the group that sociologist have begun to call emerging adults. Emerging adults are... // Read More »
August 9, 2014

A Vision of the “New Medicine”

I confess that at times I feel like a broken record, lamenting the same story repeatedly; but I’m watching as the bulldozer of progress plows under a profession near and dear to my heart, a loss that will impact all of us, for better or for worse. The power behind these changes is nebulous and pervasive—and impossible to obstruct or thwart. While there is no... // Read More »
August 7, 2014

More on Allocation vs Rationing

A comment to my post from last week started with the statement, “The whole discussion [of whether discussions of value are just Trojan Horses for unjust rationing] would be less strained if money wasn’t so scarce in health care.”  If by this is meant, conversations about medical expenses would be easier if the prices weren’t so high—well, sure.  If what is meant is more like,... // Read More »
August 7, 2014

Bioethics Commission 201: The Functions of a U.S. Bioethics Commission – Advice, Not Enforcement

The Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues (Bioethics Commission) advises the President as issues arise from advances in biomedicine and related areas of science and technology. It seeks to identify and promote policies and practices that ensure scientific research, health care delivery, and technological innovation are conducted in a socially and ethically responsible […]
August 5, 2014

Attending to Attention

It’s hard not to notice that the idea of “attention” is on a lot of people’s minds. In just one week my desk received a copy of The Hedgehog Review,, the monthly Turning Points Magazine & Devotional, and an e-mail message from a parent all dealing with this subject. Since the advent of a DSM diagnoses involving deficits of attention (initially linked to hyperactivity), the... // Read More »
July 31, 2014

“Value” vs “Rationing”

I put the two terms in quotation marks because I worry about how easy it is for us (including me) to use terms polemically when the underlying discussions are difficult. Wesley Smith, whose “Human Exceptionalism” blog I admire (over at National Review Online), recently posted his concern about the American Society of Clinical Oncology’s (ASCO’s) efforts to define, among its leadership and membership at large,... // Read More »
July 26, 2014

Following in the Errant Footsteps of the VA

The recent revelation of the crisis—and failure–of caregiving in the VA health system raises grave concerns for American health care in general and should motivate physician leaders to re-evaluate their approach to ethical health care. Until recently, the VA health system was a recognized leader in health care quality, patient safety and ethics, outperforming most American hospitals in these areas. It had also established an... // Read More »
July 24, 2014

The upcoming debate over “CIRM 2”–CORRECTION

(I made an error about a past video involving the late actor Christopher Reeve in my post yetsterday. I strongly implied, at least, that such a video was used in the 2004 campaign for passage of California Prop. 71.  That would not be correct.  The video in question, easily found on YouTube, was aired [it indicates there] by Nuveen Investments during the 2000 Super Bowl.... // Read More »
July 24, 2014

Presidential Bioethics Commission 101

The National Commission for the Protection of Human Subjects of Biomedical and Behavioral Research was formed by Congress and charged with identifying fundamental principles for research involving human volunteers. It completed its work and was ended in 1979. That commission is recognized as the first contemporary U.S. bioethics commission and since its formation, bioethics has […]

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Published Articles (1)

American Journal of Bioethics: Volume 13 Issue 1 - Jan 2013

100th Issue Anniversary Editorial David Magnus