Hot Topics: Health Care
Step nine in a six-year judicial saga. On Wednesday, the French Council of State validated the medical decision to withdraw life-sustaining treatment from Vincent Lambert. Lambert, a quadriplegic in a vegetative state for more than ten years, has beco...Full Article
A six-month investigation by Kaiser Health News and PBS NewsHour finds that older Americans are quietly killing themselves in nursing homes, assisted living centers and adult care homes. "Even in supervised settings, records show, older people find wa...Full Article
Written by Gabriel De Marco Neurointerventions can be roughly described as treatments or procedures that act directly on the physical properties of the brain in order to affect the subject’s psychological characteristics. The ethics of using neurointerventions can be quite complicated, and much of the discussion has revolved around the use of neurointerventions to improve […]Full Article
Children's Minnesota is offering the Ethics Simulation Conference: Practicing End of Life Conversations. On June 27-28, 2019, get simulated practice of difficult conversations in the adult, pediatric, and neonatal health care setting.Full Article
Munira Abdulla was 32 when she suffered a traumatic brain injury after the car she was riding in was hit by a bus in 1991. She has spent the past 27 years in a minimally conscious state. But last year, following rehabilitation in Germany, she began to...Full Article
Newspaper headlines around the world provocatively ask: "Can Dead Brains Come Back to Life?" (Toronto Star). Even the Wall Street Journal reports: "Scientists Restore Some Brain Function After Death." Commentaries in Nature, this week, suggest that "p...Full Article
My latest Law & Ethics in Oncology column for the ASCO Post is "Full Disclosure: What Oncologists Must Tell Patients About Their Experience and Training."
Informed consent is an important part of delivering quality cancer care. Traditional ethical and legal rules require clinicians to disclose three types of information: (1) the patient’s diagnosis; (2) the nature of the proposed intervention and its intended benefits, risks, and adverse effects; and (3) medically reasonable alternatives and their benefits, risks, and adverse effects.
Recently, however, these traditional informed-consent rules have been expanding also to include non-medical information. Increasingly, clinicians must disclose personal information, such as their training and experience.
It was unethical for a fertility doctor to use his own sperm to inseminate patients without their consent. But what are the legal harms to the women? To their children?
The post What’s Wrong with a Fertility Doctor Using His Own Sperm? appeared first on The Hastings Center.Full Article
When Is It Ethical for Physician-Investigators to Seek Consent From Their Own Patients?
Why Insurance Companies Should Pay for Medical Cannabis
Developing clinical ethics support for an Australian Health Service: A survey of clinician’s experiences and views
Withholding and Withdrawing Life-Sustaining Treatment: Ethically Equivalent?
Nancy Cruzan and the Withhold Versus Withdraw Dilemma
Do Psychiatrists Hear Their Patients' Voices? The Importance of Qualitative Research on Brain-Related Technologies
Transgender Children and the Right to Transition: Medical Ethics When Parents Mean Well but Cause Harm
Ethical Guidelines for DNA Testing in Migrant Family Reunification
Ethical understandings of proxy decision making for research involving adults lacking capacity: A systematic review (framework synthesis) of empirical research
New York City health officials issued summonses to parents of three children Thursday for failing to have their children vaccinated against measles, a violation of the city’s emergency ordermandating immunizations to control a surging outbreak.Full Article
Last year, the Food and Drug Administration approved a device that can capture an image of your retina and automatically detect signs of diabetic blindness.
This new breed of artificial intelligence technology is rapidly spreading across the medical field, as scientists develop systems that can identify signs of illness and disease in a wide variety of images, from X-rays of the lungs to C.A.T. scans of the brain. These systems promise to help doctors evaluate patients more efficiently, and less expensively, than in the past.
Similar forms of artificial intelligence are likely to move beyond hospitals into the computer systems used by health care regulators, billing companies and insurance providers. Just as A.I. will help doctors check your eyes, lungs and other organs, it will help insurance providers determine reimbursement payments and policy fees.Full Article
What appeared to be a cyst in a healthy fetus turned out to be an unformed twin “absorbed” early in pregnancy, connected by a second umbilical cord and still growing.Full Article
Primary care doctors are really good at checking seniors’ cholesterol levels and blood pressure but often fail to use tests that could detect dementia.
Fewer than half of primary care doctors surveyed say they routinely test patients 65 and older for problems with memory and thinking, according to a report released Tuesday by the Alzheimer’s Association.Full Article
Invisibilia, the show about the invisible forces that shape human behavior, is back with Season 5. The first episode of the new season looks at pain in our culture through a medical mystery — and a bizarre treatment program that offers a counter-intuitive treatment approach.Full Article
More than 300 health-care experts told the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Wednesday that the agency’s landmark guidelines for the use of opioids against chronic pain are harming patients who suffer from long-term pain and benefit from the prescription narcotics.
The health-care providers, including three former U.S. drug czars, said the CDC recommendation of a daily numerical threshold for opioid use has led insurers to refuse reimbursement, pharmacies to erect obstacles to obtaining drugs and risks for doctors who want to give out more.Full Article
For more than 30 years in Oregon, cases of tetanus in children were almost mythical — studied in textbooks but never seen in person — thanks to the effectiveness of pediatric vaccination programs.
That streak ended in 2017 when an unvaccinated 6-year-old boy arrived at a hospital in the state, experiencing jaw spasms and struggling to breathe, according to a new case study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The child was playing on a farm when he cut his head on something, the report said. His parents cleaned and stitched the wound at home, but alarming symptoms emerged six days later. The boy’s jaw began clenching, and his neck and back were arched — a trademark indication of tetanus called opisthotonus that is caused by involuntary muscle spasms.Full Article
An 18-year-old from Ohio who famously inoculated himself against his mother’s wishes in December says he attributes his mother’s anti-vaccine ideology to a single source: Facebook.
Ethan Lindenberger, a high school senior, testified Tuesday before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, and underscored the importance of “credible” information. In contrast, he said, the false and deep-rooted beliefs his mother held — that vaccines were dangerous — were perpetuated by social media. Specifically, he said, she turned to anti-vaccine groups on social media for evidence that supported her point of view.Full Article
Doctors welcomed federal approval this week of a new, fast-acting nasal spray for depression. But also they expressed concerns about its cost and long-term effects, as well as the logistics of administering it in accordance with safety requirements.
The new drug, esketamine, made by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, won approval from the Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday for people who have received little or no relief from other antidepressants. The F.D.A.’s decision followed months of anticipation; esketamine, which will be marketed under the name Spravato, is the first prescription for depression derived from ketamine, an old and widely used anesthetic.Full Article
There’s a new war raging in health care, with hundreds of millions of dollars at stake and thousands of lives in the balance. The battle, pitting drug companies against doctors and patient advocates, is being fought over the unlikeliest of substances: human excrement.
The clash is over the future of fecal microbiota transplants, or F.M.T., a revolutionary treatment that has proved remarkably effective in treating Clostridioides difficile, a debilitating bacterial infection that strikes 500,000 Americans a year and kills 30,000.
The therapy transfers fecal matter from healthy donors into the bowels of ailing patients, restoring the beneficial works of the community of gut microbes that have been decimated by antibiotics. Scientists see potential for using these organisms to treat diseasesfrom diabetes to cancer.
At the heart of the controversy is a question of classification: Are the fecal microbiota that cure C. diff a drug, or are they more akin to organs, tissues and blood products that are transferred from the healthy to treat the sick? The answer will determine how the Food and Drug Administration regulates the procedure, how much it costs and who gets to profit.Full Article