Bioethics.com

Subscribe to Bioethics.com feed
Your global information source on bioethics news, issues, & events
Updated: 4 hours 12 min ago

‘Like Hell:’ As Olympics Loom, Japan Health Care in Turmoil

May 21, 2021

(Associated Press) – Hospitals in Osaka, Japan’s third-biggest city and only 2 1/2 hours by bullet train from Summer Olympics host Tokyo, are overflowing with coronavirus patients. About 35,000 people nationwide — twice the number of those in hospitals — must stay at home with the disease, often becoming seriously ill and sometimes dying before they can get medical care. As cases surge in Osaka, medical workers say that every corner of the system has been slowed, stretched and burdened. And it’s happening in other parts of the country, too. (Read Full Article)

The post ‘Like Hell:’ As Olympics Loom, Japan Health Care in Turmoil first appeared on Bioethics.com.

The Sperm Donation Is Free, But There’s a Catch

May 21, 2021

(The Atlantic) – Madison Hess and her partner are looking for sperm donors and hoping that the third time’s a charm. Hess has already tried clinical insemination twice with sperm from a cryobank, a method that her private insurance fully covered. On both occasions, she didn’t get pregnant. “Since neither time worked, and because I want to cut costs, I’m trying an at-home method,” she told me via email. By this, Hess means that she’s using Facebook groups with names such as Sperm Donation USA that are dedicated to matching hopeful mothers with individuals willing to donate their genetic material for free or next to nothing. These informal pages purport to cut out the fees associated with pricey fertility centers. But the pages have also provided a way for sperm recipients and donors to circumvent the medical and ethical standards established by licensed clinics, if they wish. (Read Full Article)

The post The Sperm Donation Is Free, But There’s a Catch first appeared on Bioethics.com.

India’s Government Seeks to Take a Grip on Fungal Infections in Covid Patients

May 21, 2021

(New York Times) – India’s federal health ministry raised an alarm on Thursday, asking state governments to immediately report all cases of a potentially deadly fungal infection that appears to be spreading quickly among Covid-19 patients. The rare condition, mucormycosis, commonly known as black fungus, was present in India before the pandemic, but it is affecting those with Covid or those who have recently recovered. (Read Full Article)

The post India’s Government Seeks to Take a Grip on Fungal Infections in Covid Patients first appeared on Bioethics.com.

‘It’s a Minefiled’: COVID Vaccine Safety Poses Unique Communication Challenge

May 21, 2021

(Nature) – Public confidence in the safety of COVID-19 vaccines dipped in the United States after government officials paused vaccinations with the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) shot last month, according to a poll. During the ten-day hiatus, officials explored whether the vaccine was linked to a rare type of blood clot, but they ultimately deemed the jab safe and gave the green light to resume its use. After the pause began, 7% of unvaccinated adults who were surveyed said that the news about blood clots made them less likely to want any COVID-19 shot, according to data published by the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF). The incident demonstrates the knife-edge that public-health authorities have been walking since COVID-19 vaccines became available late last year. (Read Full Article)

The post ‘It’s a Minefiled’: COVID Vaccine Safety Poses Unique Communication Challenge first appeared on Bioethics.com.

Lab-Grown Minihearts Beat Like the Real Thing

May 21, 2021

(Science) – They are no bigger than sesame seeds, and they pulse with a hypnotic rhythm. These are human “minihearts,” the first to be created in the lab with clearly beating chambers. The miniature organs, or organoids, mimic the working heart of a 25-day-old human embryo and could help unravel many mysteries—including why babies’ hearts don’t scar after they experience a heart attack. (Read Full Article)

The post Lab-Grown Minihearts Beat Like the Real Thing first appeared on Bioethics.com.

Getting More People Vaccinated Against Covid-19 Means Wasting Doses

May 21, 2021

(Wall Street Journal) – When Covid-19 vaccines first arrived at health departments around the country, officials took to calling the shots liquid gold in a plea to prevent doses from going unused or being wasted. Now that supplies are ample and the eager are dwindling, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued new guidance. Sites should not miss an opportunity to vaccinate an individual, even if it means remaining doses in a vial will go to waste, the CDC said late Thursday. (Read Full Article)

The post Getting More People Vaccinated Against Covid-19 Means Wasting Doses first appeared on Bioethics.com.

Covid-19 Disrupts Years of Health Progress in U.S.

May 21, 2021

(Wall Street Journal) – Deaths from the Covid-19 pandemic are causing an extraordinary jolt in the U.S., inflating the nation’s death rate to the highest level seen in nearly two decades. Whether the U.S. will quickly snap back to pre-pandemic levels following a mass-vaccination effort remains to be seen. Daily Covid-19 deaths are on their way back down, but the disease is unlikely to disappear, and health experts say there could also be long-running effects from issues like missed cancer screenings, a surging rate of drug overdoses and health inequities exacerbated by the pandemic. (Read Full Article)

The post Covid-19 Disrupts Years of Health Progress in U.S. first appeared on Bioethics.com.

Why Covax, the Fund to Vaccinate the World, Is Struggling

May 20, 2021

(Vox) – Early on in the pandemic, global health experts envisioned a nightmare scenario: Covid-19 vaccines are created, but they go almost exclusively to rich countries that can afford to buy them. People in poorer countries are left to get sick and die. To prevent this, the experts set up an international initiative called Covax, designed to make sure every country in the world gets access to vaccines regardless of its ability to pay. In the fall of 2020, Covax set a clear goal: Buy 2 billion doses and make them available to nations in need before the end of 2021. (Read Full Article)

The post Why Covax, the Fund to Vaccinate the World, Is Struggling first appeared on Bioethics.com.

Covid-19 Vaccine Booster Shots Raise Tough Issues for Health Authorities

May 20, 2021

(Wall Street Journal) – While most countries are still cranking up their vaccination drives, some are already making plans to deliver millions of booster shots into arms later this year. Concerns that Covid-19 may morph into a seasonal menace are driving preparations in the U.S., the European Union and the U.K. for a winter vaccine booster program. The plans are precautionary, according to public-health officials, and it isn’t yet certain they will be put into operation or at what scale. Disease experts say the need for a winter vaccine drive will depend on whether vaccine-induced immunity fades over time and if the current crop of vaccines are effective against virus variants. (Read Full Article)

The post Covid-19 Vaccine Booster Shots Raise Tough Issues for Health Authorities first appeared on Bioethics.com.

The Promise And Perils of the New Fertility Entrepreneurs

May 20, 2021

(The New Yorker) – Today’s fertility entrepreneurs represent a new, proactive attitude toward reproduction, centered on preëmptive treatments during one’s most fertile years. This shift opens up a potentially limitless market, as Lucy van de Wiel, a research associate at the Reproductive Sociology Research Group at the University of Cambridge, and the author of “Freezing Fertility,” told me. “You don’t have to wait for people to become infertile and then they look for a solution,” she said. Instead, “you can basically tell women that they need to manage their fertility, and they need your services to do that.” Anticipating regret—Brunel’s “[****], I should have frozen my eggs” moment—is essential to the business model. If the old goal was to make a baby, accounting for lost time, the new goal is to make fertility, starting at any age. (Read Full Article)

The post The Promise And Perils of the New Fertility Entrepreneurs first appeared on Bioethics.com.

Gov. Greg Abbott Signs Into Law One of Nation’s Strictest Abortion Measures, Banning Procedure as Early as Six Weeks Into a Pregnancy

May 19, 2021

(Texas Tribune) – Gov. Greg Abbott signed into a law Wednesday a measure that would prohibit in Texas abortions as early as six weeks — before some women know they are pregnant — and open the door for almost any private citizen to sue abortion providers and others. The signing of the bill opens a new frontier in the battle over abortion restrictions as first-of-its-kind legal provisions — intended to make the law harder to block — are poised to be tested in the courts. (Read Full Article)

The post Gov. Greg Abbott Signs Into Law One of Nation’s Strictest Abortion Measures, Banning Procedure as Early as Six Weeks Into a Pregnancy first appeared on Bioethics.com.

Why Is the World’s Largest COVID-19 Vaccine Campaign Faltering?

May 19, 2021

(Science) – On a Sunday morning in early April, as Mumbai was in a daze from the first weeks of a surge of COVID-19 and had instituted nighttime curfews, Baliram Boomkar asked his neighbors in the city’s Kaula Bandar slum whether they wanted a vaccine to protect them or had received one. Some said they had but only because their employers required it. One man said he’d get vaccinated if his company gave him time off to recover from side effects. “COVID is nothing,” he said. “People are only spreading rumors. It’s all a lie.” A woman said she was afraid to get the shot because the clinic might test her for COVID-19, find she’s positive, and then force her to quarantine—as happened last year. “I know I can’t avoid the vaccine, but I want to be the last in the queue,” she said. (Read Full Article)

The post Why Is the World’s Largest COVID-19 Vaccine Campaign Faltering? first appeared on Bioethics.com.

Racism Derails Black Men’s Health Even as Education Levels Rise

May 19, 2021

(Kaiser Health News) – More education typically leads to better health, yet Black men in the U.S. are not getting the same benefit as other groups, research suggests. The reasons for the gap are vexing, experts said, but may provide an important window into unique challenges faced by Black men as they try to gain not only good health but also an equal footing in the U.S.

The post Racism Derails Black Men’s Health Even as Education Levels Rise first appeared on Bioethics.com.

How the Covid Pandemic Ends: Scientists Look to the Past to See the Future

May 19, 2021

(STAT News) – Instead, the viruses that caused these pandemics underwent a transition. Or more to the point, we did. Our immune systems learned enough about them to fend off the deadliest manifestations of infection, at least most of the time. Humans and viruses reached an immunological détente. Instead of causing tsunamis of devastating illness, over time the viruses came to trigger small surges of milder illness. Pandemic flu became seasonal flu. The viruses became endemic. If the pattern holds, and it is expected to, SARS-2 will at some point join a handful of human coronaviruses that cause colds, mainly in the winter, when conditions favor their transmission. (Read Full Article)

The post How the Covid Pandemic Ends: Scientists Look to the Past to See the Future first appeared on Bioethics.com.

Do People Need to Know Which COVID-19 Vaccine They’re Getting? One Country Says No

May 19, 2021

(NPR) – The Philippines’ Health Department says it will no longer allow local governments to announce which brand of coronavirus vaccines will be available at inoculation sites. The move comes after hundreds of people this week lined up at a site in Manila when they found out the Pfizer vaccine would be given out there. (Read Full Article)

The post Do People Need to Know Which COVID-19 Vaccine They’re Getting? One Country Says No first appeared on Bioethics.com.

Winning Idea: Ohio Vaccine Lottery Shows Some Incentives May Work

May 19, 2021

(Medscape) – For some residents of Ohio, the prospect of winning $1 million is enough of an incentive to roll up their sleeves and get vaccinated against COVID-19. In fact, since Governor Mike DeWine’s office announced the five weekly drawings of $1 million each, the number of people signing up has increased. (Read Full Article)

The post Winning Idea: Ohio Vaccine Lottery Shows Some Incentives May Work first appeared on Bioethics.com.

Covid-19 Shots for Teens Can Hit Legal Snags and Parental Pushback

May 19, 2021

(Wall Street Journal) – With children aged 12 to 15 newly able to receive a Covid-19 vaccine, the patchwork of state laws that govern whether minors can receive the shots without their parents’ permission brings a new wrinkle to inoculation efforts. And vaccine providers—from family doctors to drugstores—are sorting out how to navigate situations in which children want the shot but their parents say no. (Read Full Article)

The post Covid-19 Shots for Teens Can Hit Legal Snags and Parental Pushback first appeared on Bioethics.com.

Covid’s Next Challenge: The Growing Divide Between Rich and Poor Economies

May 19, 2021

(Wall Street Journal) – Covid-19 is reopening a rift between economies in the world’s richest and poorest nations, driven by growth rates that are moving firmly in opposite directions. In the U.S., economists are forecasting a return to boomtime growth levels of the “roaring 20s”; China’s economy expanded at a record 18.3% in the first quarter; and the U.K. is growing faster than at any time since the end of World War II. Yet across the developing world, where people are largely unvaccinated and governments are unable to afford sustained stimulus measures, economies are falling further behind, struggling to rebound from last year’s record contraction. (Read Full Article)

The post Covid’s Next Challenge: The Growing Divide Between Rich and Poor Economies first appeared on Bioethics.com.

To the Bat Cave: In Search of Covid’s Origins, Scientists Reignite Polarizing Debate on Wuhan ‘Lab Leak’

May 19, 2021

(Kaiser Health News) – Once dismissed as a conspiracy theory, the idea that the covid virus escaped from a Chinese lab is gaining high-profile attention. As it does, reputations of renowned scientists are at risk — and so is their personal safety. At the center of the storm is Peter Daszak, whose EcoHealth Alliance has worked directly with Chinese coronavirus scientists for years. The scientist has been pilloried by Republicans and lost National Institutes of Health funding for his work. He gets floods of threats, including hate mail with suspicious powders. In a rare interview, he conceded that he can’t disprove that the deadly covid-19 virus resulted from a lab leak at the Wuhan Institute of Virology — though he doesn’t believe it. (Read Full Article)

The post To the Bat Cave: In Search of Covid’s Origins, Scientists Reignite Polarizing Debate on Wuhan ‘Lab Leak’ first appeared on Bioethics.com.

600,000 12- to 15-Year-Olds Have Been Vaccinated, CDC Says

May 19, 2021

(Medscape) – More than 600,000 children aged 12 to 15 have been vaccinated against COVID-19, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, MD, said Tuesday during an update on the national vaccination program. All of those vaccinations have occurred in the week since the CDC authorized the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for that age group, Walensky said. (Read Full Article)

The post 600,000 12- to 15-Year-Olds Have Been Vaccinated, CDC Says first appeared on Bioethics.com.

Pages