Hot Topics: Health Care

Blog Posts (1271)

October 17, 2014

Metaphor: Shopping

Story: a white couple ordered sperm from a sperm bank, stipulating that it be from a white man, for artificial insemination; however, in the delivery room, it was immediately apparent that they didn’t get what they ordered, as their newborn daughter was mixed-race. The couple is now suing the sperm bank for $50,000. In Tuesday’s Chicago Tribune, columnist Dahleen Glanton wrote a commentary on this... // Read More »
October 17, 2014

Death by Neurologic Criteria 1968 - 2014: Changing Interpretations

The December 2014 issue of the Journal of Critical Care includes a special section titled "Death by Neurologic Criteria 1968 - 2014: Changing Interpretations." The future of death Brian Wowk Where have we been? Where are we going? Initiatives to imp...
October 16, 2014

Ebola and the Challenge of Public Conversations

Writing on this blog two days ago, Tom Garigan offered a pretty thorough critique of the CDC’s response to Ebola, and the agency’s defense of that response.  I write not to challenge that, or even address it directly.  I do note that Tom is not alone in his criticism of the way the public health officials are speaking to the public at large.  Complaints have... // Read More »
October 16, 2014

The Best-Selling Biologic Drugs

Biologic drugs are a big deal for the pharmaceutical industry right now. Blockbuster chemicals for common conditions like diabetes and hypertension are largely things of the past. We’re getting pretty good at controlling those conditions, and few people expect a … Continue reading
October 16, 2014

Minnesota Sentences Melchert-Dinkel to 178 Days in Jail for Assisted Suicide

Even in the five states (MT, NM, OR, VT, WA) where aid in dying is legal, assisted suicide is not.  

Aid in dying is for capacitated, terminally ill patients like Brittany Maynard.  In contrast, assisted suicide occurs under less controlled and less justifiable circumstances.  

Case in point:  William Melchert-Dinkel, who was just re-sentenced in Minnesota for preying upon suicidal people — encouraging two to take their lives.

October 16, 2014

Dying in America: IOM Recommendations and Next Steps for Stakeholders

On September 17, 2014, the Institute of Medicine released the report Dying in America: Improving Quality and Honoring Individual Preferences Near the End of Life, in which an expert committee identified “persistent major gaps in care near the end of life that require urgent attention from numerous stakeholder groups.” The committee made comprehensive recommendations in the areas of care delivery, clinician–patient communication and advance care planning, professional education and development, payment systems and policies, and public engagement and education.

On November 10, 2014 (1:00 ET), the IOM will present a webinar that will review the recommendations, explore possible next steps and barriers to implementation, and provide an opportunity for stakeholder groups to join the conversation. (Register here)  The webinar will feature brief presentations and an extended Q&A session with: 

  • Philip Pizzo (committee co-chair), Stanford University School of Medicine
  • David M. Walker (committee co-chair), Former U.S Comptroller General
  • Christian Sinclair (committee member), Gentiva Health Services (through September 2014)
  • Adrienne Stith Butler (study director), Institute of Medicine

October 15, 2014

Bioethics Commission to Offer Presentations at ASBH This Week

The Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues (Bioethics Commission) is pleased to offer multiple presentations at the American Society for Bioethics and the Humanities (ASBH) Annual Meeting, scheduled for October 16-19 in San Diego, Calif. Over the course of the four day conference Bioethics Commission staff will highlight a number of bioethical issues, […]
October 15, 2014

Family Update on Jahi McMath

This was posted to Facebook today: "MESSAGE FROM JAHI'S MOTHER, NAILAH: Hello Everyone, I wanted to take this time out to thank you all for every donation every prayer and every positive thought you send Jahi's way. Jahi is physically stable. All of h...
October 14, 2014

Contain AND Extinguish

Dr. Tom Frieden, Director of the Centers for Disease Control, wrote an article published on October 9th entitled, “Why I don’t support a travel ban to combat Ebola outbreak.” In it he provides ten arguments against a travel ban; these arguments can be categorized as those claiming that such a ban would be ineffective, harmful, and unnecessary. Unfortunately for Dr. Frieden, they raise more questions... // Read More »
October 14, 2014

Why we ignored Ebola until recently

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

Ebola burst onto the scene in 1976 when a thirty-old man arrived at the Yambuku Mission Hospital in Zaire complaining of severe diarrhea.…