Hot Topics: Clinical Ethics

Blog Posts (86)

October 12, 2018

BioethicsTV (October 8-12, 2018): #TheResident #TheGoodDoctor #ChicagoMed #GreysAnatomy

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

“Exploring ethical issues in TV medical dramas”

Jump to The Resident (Season 2; Episode 3): Saline shortage, pressure to bill; Jump to The Good Doctor (Season 2; Episode 3): Structural discrimination against women; surrogate decision-making; Jump to Chicago Med (Season 4; Episode 3): Best interest of a child; faith versus science; Jump to Grey’s Anatomy (Season 15; Episode 4): Fraud, assault, lies, and the ethics police

Medical dramas this week seemed to focus on two themes: 1.…

October 5, 2018

Crowdsourcing: A New Resource for Advanced Training in Bioethics

by Lindsay Zausmer Feuerman, BA and Amy McGuire JD, Ph.D.1

Anincreasing numberof universities offer undergraduate courses and even majors in the fields of bioethics and medical humanities.…

September 21, 2018

We Convey More Than We (Literally) Say

by Jason N. Batten, Bonnie O. Wong, William F. Hanks & David Magnus

This issue of the American Journal of Bioethics features a target article by Blumenthal-Barby and Ubel that focuses on patients who are unrealistically optimistic, in denial, or self-deceived.…

August 7, 2018

The Clinical Dialectic: What Makes Life Worth Living?

STUDENT VOICES | CHYNN ETHICS PRIZE THIRD-PLACE WINNER By Brett Taylor Can too much of a good thing become bad? During the spring semester of my junior year, I had overexerted myself while working out. In doing so, I destroyed my muscles to the point that their constituent proteins were coursing through my bloodstream and […]
July 31, 2018

Credentialing Exam is A Battle for Power and Soul of Bioethics

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

Like most members of the American Society for Bioethics & Humanities (ASBH), I received an email last week geared toward enticing me to sign up to take the new Healthcare Ethics Consultant accreditation exam.…

July 6, 2018

Certifying Clinical Ethics: Fracturing Bioethics

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

After an effort of nearly a decade, bioethics is taking a big step toward professionalization. Under the American Society for Bioethics & Humanities, the Healthcare Ethics Consultant Certification Commission has launched a health care ethics consultant certification program (HEC-C).…

June 13, 2018

Over-Screening, Rigid Protocols, and Changing Guidelines: A Personal Journey Through the Looking-Glass

by Craig Klugman

A new JAMAarticle reports on a US Preventive Services Task Force recommendation against routine ECG in patients without symptoms of heart disease: “For asymptomatic adults at low risk of CVD events (individuals with a 10-year CVD event risk less than 10%), it is very unlikelythat the information from resting or exercise ECG (beyond that obtained with conventional CVD risk factors) will result in a change in the patient’s risk category….

June 4, 2018


This post also appears as an editorial in the June 2018 issue of The American Journal of Bioethics.

by Albert R.

April 26, 2018

War Against Science 3.0: The EPA, Doublespeak, and Obfuscation

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

Transparency is a good thing. In ethics courses, we teach that doctors should be transparent to their patients, being truthful and disclosing information.…

April 24, 2018

BioethicsTV (April 16-20): #TheResident, #ChicagoMed, #GreysAnatomy

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

The Resident (Season 1; Episode 10): Self-doctoring; nonmaleficence; the problem with hospitals…; Chicago Med (Season 3; Episode 16): Compassionate lying; choosing gender; medical error; Grey’s Anatomy (Season 14; Episode 20): #METOO

The Resident (Season 1; Episode 10): Self-doctoring; nonmaleficence; the problem with hospitals…

After Conrad has a run-in with a skateboard while jogging, he hobbles into the hospital with a sprained ankle.…

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Published Articles (103)

AJOB Neuroscience: Volume 18 Issue 3 - Sep 2018

Telling the Truth About Pain: Informed Consent and the Role of Expectation in Pain Intensity Nada Gligorov

American Journal of Bioethics: Volume 18 Issue 9 - Sep 2018

The Ethics of Smart Pills and Self-Acting Devices: Autonomy, Truth-Telling, and Trust at the Dawn of Digital Medicine Craig M. Klugman, Laura B. Dunn, Jack Schwartz & I. Glenn Cohen

American Journal of Bioethics: Volume 18 Issue 9 - Sep 2018

In Defense of “Denial”: Difficulty Knowing When Beliefs Are Unrealistic and Whether Unrealistic Beliefs Are Bad J. S. Blumenthal-Barby & Peter A. Ubel

American Journal of Bioethics: Volume 18 Issue 9 - Sep 2018

We Convey More Than We (Literally) Say Jason N. Batten, Bonnie O. Wong, William F. Hanks & David Magnus

American Journal of Bioethics: Volume 18 Issue 8 - Aug 2018

When Parents Refuse: Resolving Entrenched Disagreements Between Parents and Clinicians in Situations of Uncertainty and Complexity Janine Penfield Winters

American Journal of Bioethics: Volume 18 Issue 8 - Aug 2018

The Harm Principle Cannot Replace the Best Interest Standard: Problems With Using the Harm Principle for Medical Decision Making for Children Johan Christiaan Bester

American Journal of Bioethics: Volume 18 Issue 8 - Aug 2018

Are Organ Donors Really Dead: The Near-Irrelevance of Autoresuscitation Robert M. Veatch

American Journal of Bioethics: Volume 18 Issue 8 - Aug 2018

Best Interest, Harm, God’s Will, Parental Discretion, or Utility John D. Lantos

American Journal of Bioethics: Volume 18 Issue 7 - Jul 2018

Provider Conscientious Refusal of Abortion, Obstetrical Emergencies, and Criminal Homicide Law Lawrence Nelson

American Journal of Bioethics: Volume 18 Issue 7 - Jul 2018

Uterus Transplantation: The Ethics of Using Deceased Versus Living Donors Bethany Bruno & Kavita Shah Arora

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News (231)

October 4, 2018 9:23 am

A Rocky Period For Medical Aid-In-Dying In California (California Society of Anesthesiologists)

While the recent legal battle has been a source of confusion and frustration for terminally ill Californians and their physicians, the eventual fate of this law remains unresolved. Even if there are no additional attempts to invalidate the law, it will “sunset” in 2026. Without further legislative action medical aid-in-dying will disappear from California yet again.

October 3, 2018 9:00 am

How Stratification Unites Ethical Issues in Precision Health (AMA Journal of Ethics)

The contributors to this issue address many of the ethical issues that arise in the context of precision health. Although none addresses the idea of stratification directly, the concept of stratification links their contributions together, since stratification is the basis of all precision health efforts. Stratification has only rarely been explored as a concept with ethical fallout and is often downplayed in favor of the label “precision.” Therefore, this editorial lays out how the ethical issues explored by our contributors and in precision health more broadly are united and organized by the concept of stratification.

October 2, 2018 6:00 pm

Breakthrough Leukemia Treatment Backfires in a Rare Case (The New York Times)

The groundbreaking treatment that genetically engineers a patient’s own cells to fight leukemia turned lethal in one patient, reversing his remission.
October 2, 2018 3:47 pm

AAMC Statement on Proposed Changes to Public Charge Rule (AAMC)

The AAMC issued a statement on the Department of Homeland Security’s proposed changes to how and whether immigrants can be classified as a public charge. “The AAMC and the nation’s medical schools and teaching hospitals are opposed to any policy that discourages people from pursuing medical care to which they are legally entitled. The proposed new rule would create a system where individuals are penalized for using health programs for which they legally qualify and could cause them to forgo crucial medical care, bringing with it all the health consequences that could follow. Teaching hospitals treat a disproportionate share of Medicaid patients, and we know from firsthand experience that access to care is key to ensuring that the nation’s patients have the stability and continuity of care that leads to better health outcomes,” said AAMC President and CEO Darrell G. Kirch, MD.
September 23, 2018 10:30 pm

UK doctors win battle with drug giants over cheaper eye medicine (Reuters)

Drug giants Novartis, Bayer and Roche lost a bid to stop British doctors from recommending a cheaper drug option for people with an eye disease that causes blindness.

September 19, 2018 9:00 am

Nearly 30 percent of patients prescribed opioids had no recorded pain diagnoses (PBS News)

Nearly 30 percent of U.S. patients prescribed opioids by doctors over the course of a decade had no recorded pain diagnosis, according to a new letter published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

September 17, 2018 9:00 am

'Lots of lads I know wouldn't give it a shot': the men starting care careers (The Guardian)

Wilding is one of the small – but slowly growing – number of male care workers in the UK; men make up just 18% of the social care workforce – an increase of two percentage points since 2015… A staggering 85% of men, and 76% of men aged 16-25, say they are unlikely to start a career in adult social care, while 35% of the public think working in a care home is a “woman’s career”.

September 14, 2018 2:00 am

Drug executive: It's a 'moral requirement' to charge patients the highest price (Los Angeles Times)

In his interview with the Financial Times published Tuesday, Mulye defended Martin Shkreli, the former drug company CEO who became the face of the industry’s profiteering in 2015 when he jacked up the price of a generic anti-parasitic drug needed by HIV patients by more than 5,000%. “I agree with Martin Shkreli that when he raised the price of his drug he was within his rights because he had to reward his shareholders,” Mulye told the FT. (Shkreli is currently serving a prison term on fraud charges unrelated to the price hike.)

September 12, 2018 9:00 am

Hospitals are fed up with drug companies, so they’re starting their own (The Washington Post)

A group of major American hospitals, battered by price spikes on old drugs and long-lasting shortages of critical medicines, has launched a mission-driven, not-for-profit generic drug company, Civica Rx, to take some control over the drug supply.

August 27, 2018 9:00 am

Physician-Assisted Dying is Now Legal in Multiple Places, But the Taboo Persists (LeapsMag)

Taboo topics occupy a difficult place in the history of medicine. Society has long been reticent about confronting stigmatized conditions, forcing many patients to suffer in silence and isolation, often with poorer care… The most recent issue to face such scrutiny is physician-assisted dying (PAD).

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