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Author Archive: Craig Klugman

About Craig Klugman


“Exploring ethical issues in TV medical dramas”

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

The Resident (Seasons 3; Episode 18): Maintaining the Dead; The Resident (Season 3; Episode 19): Lies, Coverups, Crossing Boundaries; Chicago Med (Season 5; Episode 17): Required Criminal Reporting; Chicago Med (Season 5; Episode 18):Advance Directives and Alzheimer’s; Innovation v. Best Care; Jealousy or Abuse

The Resident (Seasons 3; Episode 18): Maintaining the Dead

Dawn Long is a former patient from early this season who reappears. She had the Mother of All Surgeries that left her in a persistent vegetative says and has been in and out of Chastain for treatment and stabilization.…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

Dale is a 45-year-old woman who lives in Southern California. She has been a patient of Kaiser- Permanente to treat her chronic illness, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). She takes hydroxychloroquine (brand name Plaquenil) which is the safest and most effective drug to control her disease. The drug helps control flare ups of her lupus, a situation that could cause serious illness and even death.

Dale provided Buzzfeednews with a copy of a message she received from Kaiser that informed her that her prescription would no longer be renewed. The message says that she should not contact her doctor for a refill, that even with a prescription they would not give a refill, and she should not request an exemption from this policy.…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

One of the most powerful tools that epidemiologists have for containing an outbreak is contact tracing—finding out all of the people with whom an infected person has had contact during the period when they were potentially shedding the virus. The identified individuals will then be placed under isolation and observed for symptoms. This method has been used in this outbreak when public health authorities recommend isolation for people who have been near someone who is infected or have traveled from a region with a high number of cases. The idea is that by creating a cordon around people who were infected and potentially infected, they cannot spread the infection further: The outbreak is contained.…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

Doctors in Italy have run out of beds. They have run out of ventilators. They are now having to decide who may live and who will likely die. For many, utilitarianism has helped making decisions—maximizing likeliness to survive and remaining years of life. The U.S. may not be far behind in having to make these tough choices.

Some hospitals in harder hit regions like New York City and Seattle are already finding themselves stretched thin. They have had to expand their surge capacity (the ability to meet the expanded needs of a growing patient population beyond normal operations) by increasing beds in each room, putting gurneys in hallways, and setting tents.…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

“Exploring ethical issues in TV medical dramas”

The Good Doctor (Season 3; Episode 17): Lying for Good; The Resident (Season 3; Episode 17): Operating impaired when there is no option; New Amsterdam (Season 2; Episode 16):Research Misconduct; Two Wrongs Do Not Make a Right; Grey’s Anatomy (Season 16; Episode 17): VIP Justice

The Good Doctor (Season 3; Episode 17): Lying for Good

An adult leader of an outdoor for troubled youth is pricked by a cactus and comes down with an infection that causes heart damage. On top of that, during surgery a loss of oxygen compromises his kidneys to survive, he needs a new kidney but given his heart problems and a history of drug use and hepatitis B, he is an unlikely candidate.…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

The last time the United States faced a pandemic on its shores was in 1976, when the threat of the Swine Flu circling the globe led to long lines of adults getting the flu vaccine. I remember going with my parents to my school gymnasium as they wait in a long line for the injection. Because of a strong public health response and the availability of a vaccine, nothing happened—a disaster (high numbers of ill and dying people that overwhelms the health care system) was averted. The last time that a pandemic led to mass deaths and illness in the United States was the 1918 flu, which killed 50 million people worldwide (500,000 in the U.S.).…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

COVID-19 (formerly known as “coronavirus”) remains at the top of the health-related news feeds. As of February 27, the CDC reports 14 native U.S. cases (2 the result of person-to-person transmission) and 42 cases from people repatriated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship. The World Health Organization reports cases in 82,294 in 46 countries.

On Wednesday, February 26, Trump held a press conference where he outlined his plans for dealing with COVID-19 in the U.S. Trump announced that the U.S. is “very, very ready” for an epidemic and he placed Vice-President Pence in charge of the U.S.…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

The Good Doctor (Season 3; Episode 14): Lying; Social Media; Internet Medicine; The Good Doctor (Season 3; Episode 15): Pressuring a patient; Surgery to correct social problems;  New Amsterdam (Seasons 2; Episode 13): End of life; Battery; Chicago Med (Season 5; Episode 14): Can an abuser’s victim make his medical decisions?; Misdiagnosis

The Good Doctor (Season 3; Episode 14): Lying; Social Media; Internet Medicine

Cassie is a patient with a rare disorder—hey hyoid bone is too long and this causes problems. She is also a social media influencer and can or break reputations: She is turning Shaun into a bit of a celebrity.…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

The Good Doctor (Season 3; Episode 13): Making emotional decisions regarding cancer care; New Amsterdam (Season 2; Episode 12): Withdrawing ANH in PVS; Treating the Physical to Heal the Mental

The Good Doctor (Season 3; Episode 13): Making emotional decisions regarding cancer care

Reznick’s mother is dying of brain cancer. She is an artist and is unwilling to do any treatments that will affect her ability to create art. When her mother becomes unconscious and has a brain bleed, Reznick chooses a brain surgery to remove part of the brain that is bleeding rather than the full tumor removal that her mother has refused.…

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by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

A Facebook connection, we can call them Virginia, recently posted an image of a metal ring with electrical prongs. The caption said “Introducing the new Trump is not my president ring, insert it into an outlet and bam, Trump is not your president.” Of course, plugging in a metal ring that you are holding into an electrical outlet would electrocute and potentially kill a person. The message is that people who are not supportive of the President should be die. This is not the first time this person posted a similar concept. Each time I point out that it is ethically unacceptable to espouse that a person should be killed for their beliefs.…

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