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Ontario Woman Needs Ex’s Consent to Implant Purchased Embryo: Court

June 3, 2019

(Toronto Sun) – A divorced woman cannot have a purchased frozen embryo implanted over the objections of her ex-husband, Ontario’s top court ruled on Friday in a ground-breaking case. In overturning a lower court decision, the Court of Appeal ruled that both former spouses retained rights to the embryo to which neither are genetically related.

Citing “Safety Concerns,” FDA Cautions National Marketer of Unproven Stem Cell Treatments

June 3, 2019

(ProPublica) – In a sign of its increasing concern about the marketing of stem cells as cure-alls, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration this week notified a major distributor of such products that they are considered drugs and must have FDA approval in order to be sold legally. The FDA wrote to R3 Stem Cell following a report this month by ProPublica and The New Yorker that the company’s chief executive officer, Dr. David Greene, was touting products made from birth tissue as therapies for a wide range of ailments despite a lack of scientific evidence.

When ‘Right to Try’ Isn’t Enough: Congress Wants a Single ALS Patient to Get a Therapy Never Tested in Humans

June 3, 2019

(STAT News) – The Hermstads’ progress reopens an ardent debate in Washington over the FDA’s role in determining when sick or dying patients can access experimental therapies — and what role career politicians should play in the nation’s decisions about how and when to let patients access untested treatments. It also underscores a fundamental question about the role of lawmakers: Is it fair for a member of Congress to intervene on behalf of a single constituent?

Revealed: Women’s Fertility App Is Funded by Anti-Abortion Campaigners

June 3, 2019

(The Guardian) – A popular women’s health and fertility app sows doubt about birth control, features claims from medical advisers who are not licensed to practice in the US, and is funded and led by anti-abortion, anti-gay Catholic campaigners, a Guardian investigation has found. The Femm app, which collects personal information about sex and menstruation from users, has been downloaded more than 400,000 times since its launch in 2015, according to developers. It has users in the US, the EU, Africa and Latin America, its operating company claims.

These Are the Organs Transplant Patients Need the Most

June 3, 2019

(Quartz) – Today, there are more than 114,000 patients waiting for organs in the US. The most in-demand organ, by far, are kidneys, which have a waiting list seven times longer than that for livers, the next most needed organ.

Clarence Thomas Knows Nothing of My Work

June 3, 2019

(The Atlantic) – In Tuesday’s ruling on Indiana’s abortion law, Justice Clarence Thomas took the national debate over the right to choose to a dark new place: eugenics. His 20-page concurring opinion included an extensive discussion of the eugenics movement of the early 20th century. Thomas argued that as the justices consider abortion going forward, they should pay more attention to its potential to become a “tool of eugenic manipulation.” In making his argument, Thomas cited my book Imbeciles: The Supreme Court, American Eugenics, and the Sterilization of Carrie Buck repeatedly. (He also cited an article I wrote about Harvard’s ties to eugenics). 

A Doctor Speaks Out About Ageism in Medicine

June 3, 2019

(Kaiser Health News) – Society gives short shrift to older age. This distinct phase of life doesn’t get the same attention that’s devoted to childhood. And the special characteristics of people in their 60s, 70s, 80s and beyond are poorly understood. Medicine reflects this narrow-mindedness. In medical school, physicians learn that people in the prime of life are “normal” and scant time is spent studying aging. In practice, doctors too often fail to appreciate older adults’ unique needs or to tailor treatments appropriately.

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