Tag: syndicated

Blog Posts (1388)

December 18, 2014

Two Cheers for Choosing Wisely

Dena S. Davis
December 18, 2014

Physician, Torture Thyself

by Sean Philpott-Jones, Director of the Center for Bioethics and Clinical Leadership Last week, the US Senate Intelligence Committee released its long awaited report describing the techniques that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) used to interrogate suspected terrorists and other combatants captured during our long running War on Terror. The so-called Torture Report, the product […]
December 18, 2014

Most Physicians Give 'Futile' Life-Sustaining Interventions

 The Medscape Ethics Report 2014 survey finds that most physicians give "futile" life-sustaining interventions.  
December 17, 2014

Brain death and uncertainty

The case of Jahi McMath has been back in the news. She was declared brain dead Dec. 12, 2013 after she went into cardiac arrest following a tonsillectomy surgery in California. Her mother did not accept the diagnosis of brain death and moved her to New Jersey where state law allows the continuation of medical treatment for a person who has been declared brain dead... // Read More »
December 17, 2014

How Healthy Food Could Make You Fat

Have you ever eaten a healthy meal, maybe some brown rice and stir-fried veggies, and found yourself ready for another meal just a short while later? Or, more often couldn’t overcome a hankering for a satisfying dessert to top off … Continue reading
December 17, 2014

Medical Futility Lawsuit in Philadelphia Proceeds

The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania just permitted a plaintiff's medical futility lawsuit (including claims for punitive damages) to proceed against Thomas Jefferson University Hospital and several individual clinicians. B...
December 16, 2014

Follow-Up on My Stoplight Musings

Recently, I posed some thoughts about why the stoplight warning symbols about to be used for food products in United Kingdom might be misleading. A blogger at BigThink.com picked up on my train of thought. Here is her piece: Color-Coded … Continue reading
December 16, 2014

Does A Just Society Use the “R” Word?

by Susan Mathews, Bioethics Program Alumna (2014) Healthcare spending in the U.S. is expected to grow by more than 5 percent annually over the next ten years. Should that prediction hold true, by 2023 health care spending will account for a fifth of the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP). Unfortunately, this level of spending is not sustainable […]
December 16, 2014

DRW v. University of Wisconsin - Facilitating Surrogates' "Illegal" Decisions to Stop Life-Sustaining Treatment

I blogged about this case over five years ago when it was first filed.  Disability Rights Wisconsin sued the University of Wisconsin and several individual physicians over their "plan of noncare" for several patients.  Basicall...
December 16, 2014

Notes on the Mill Valley Film Festival, 2014

I saw 19 films at the 2014, 36th Annual Mill Valley Film Festival (MVFF36) this October. After the first five films on my list I realized a pattern which the festival's programmers had not intentionally planned. There were at two major groups that stood out with some that crossed both.

One group of films dealt with people with Enormous Skill, or Promise, Meeting Extraordinary Adversity. They all in some way reflected the relationship between the brain and the mind or how the mind deals with the stress the brain transmits.  The dissolution of the Brain-Mind paradox also reflects ways in which new science, particularly neuroscience, is creating broader social inclusion of individuals with circumstances which previously, historically, would have stigmatized them; autism spectrum traits, physical disabilities, gender differences.

Beneficence - or doing "good" with knowledge, including technology, is Beneficence. I consider these films to illustrate “doing good” with knowledge. I call this set of films 'Promise meets Adversity,' They include: THE IMITATION GAME,  STATES OF GRACE, THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING, IMPERIAL DREAMS and MOMMY.  None of these were comedies but they are all very good.

A second large group of movies at MVFF36 thematically dealt with issues of Proxy Parenting. Who best raises a child? Ethically, we consider that parents represent the best interest of their children, unless proven otherwise.  These films pondered more questions than they answered but Then if not the parent - who? Sometimes the best a parent can do is to select others to act in their stead. Working parents do it all the time, if it can be afforded.  Overwhelmed parents do it also. When parents relinquish parental involvement, temporary or permanently how do we define their right to do so. At what age is a child able to decide on their own about who should parent them?

Medically and legally we have made a value judgment to emancipate children for sexual issues but not for other matters. Should the parameters of emancipation be psychological, cultural, religious or intellectual? Regarding autonomy, do we as bioethicists or clinicians,  “know it when we see it?”  I call this group of films 'Parents and Proxies.'  The MVFF2014 relevant films are: MARIE'S STORY, NATURAL SCIENCES/Ciencias Naturales,  LIKE SUNDAY LIKE RAIN. Li  THE TALE OF PRINCESS KAGUAY/Kaguya-Hime No Monogatari, BLACK AND WHITE and SOLEILS. Many of these films have significant comedic or lighthearted elements though the deal with serious issues.

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