Journal of Medical Ethics (vol. 41, no. 12, 2015) is available online by subscription only.
- “Summary of Saviour Siblings” by Michelle Taylor-Sands
- “Human Dignity in Bioethics and Law” by Charles Foster
- “No View from Nowhere: The Challenge of Grounding Dignity without Theology” by Charles Camosy
- “Long-Term Survival with Unfavourable Outcome: A Qualitative and Ethical Analysis” by Stephen Honeybul, et al.
- “Creating Human Organs in Chimaera Pigs: An Ethical Source of Immunocompatible Organs? by David Shaw, et al.
- “Treatment Decisions and Changing Selves” by Rebecca Dresser
- “Assent as an Ethical Imperative in the Treatment of ADHD” by Anson J. Koshy and Dominic A. Sisti
- “HIV Transmission Law in the Age of Treatment-as-Prevention” by Bridget Haire and John Kaldor
- “Improving Access to Medicines: Empowering Patients in the Quest to Improve Treatment for Rare Lethal Diseases” by Les Halpin, et al.
(Washington Post) – The first study to examine religious identity and workplace discrimination against American Muslim doctors found that nearly half felt more scrutiny at work compared to their peers, and nearly one in four said they experienced religious discrimination during their careers. Almost 10 percent of the physicians said patients had refused their care because they are Muslim, according to the new study.
(Medicins Sans Frontiers) – The international medical humanitarian organisation Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) today delivered a petition signed by more than 547,000 people to the White House, calling for U.S. President Obama to consent to an independent investigation of the deadly U.S. air strikes on MSF’s trauma hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan. The airstrikes on 3 October killed at least 30 people, including 14 MSF staff members, and destroyed MSF’s hospital.
(Nanowerk) – Researchers have developed a new three-drug delivery system for cancer treatment, especially metastatic melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer – and shown that the system may have particular value with cancers like this that often spread through the lymphatic system. The new technology takes advantage of nanoparticles that can migrate to, and increase the effectiveness of an attack on cancer cells in the body’s lymph nodes. This can also reduce the development of drug resistance and the broader toxicity often associated with this type of chemotherapy.
Palliative Medicine (vol. 29, no. 10, 2015) is available online by subscription only.
- “Palliative Care Costs in Canada: A Descriptive Comparison of Studies of Urban and Rural Patients near End of Life” by Serge Dumont, et al.
- “An International Comparison of Costs of End-of-Life Care for Advanced Lung Cancer Patients Using Health Administrative Date” by Karen E. Bremner, et al.
- “Enabling a Family Caregiver-Led Assessment of Support Needs in Home-Based Palliative Care: Potential Translation into Practice” by Samar Aoun, et al.
- “Difficult Decisions: An Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis Study of Healthcare Professionals’ Perceptions of Oxygen Therapy in Palliative Care” by Carol Ann Kelly and Mary R. O’Brien
The New England Journal of Medicine (vol. 373, no. 22, 2015) is available online by subscription only.
- “Transparency and the Supreme Court—Can Employers Refuse to Disclose How Much They Pay for Health Care?” by N. Bagley and C. Koller
- “History of Medicine: Preventing and Treating Narcotic Addiction—A Century of Federal Drug Control” by D.T. Courtwright
- “Intensity of Chronic Pain—The Wrong Metric?” by J.C. Ballantyne and M.D. Sullivan
- “Nourishment” by R. Srivastava
The New Bioethics (vol. 21, no. 2, 2015) is available online by subscription only.
- “Representative Aspects of Some Synthetic Gametes” by Calum Mackellar
- “Transhumanisim: A New Kind of Promethean Hubris” by Agneta Sutton
- “Lessons in Biopolitics and Agency: Agamben on Addiction” by Anke Snoek and Craig L. Fry
- “A Systematic Review on Confidentiality, Disclosure, and Stigma in the United States: Lessons for HIV Care in Pregnancy from Reproductive Genetics” by Barbara Wilkinson and Davita Shah Arora
- “The Evolution of Autonomy” by Trevor Stammers
- “The Idea of Patents vs. the Idea of University” by Thana Cristina de Campos
(Pro Publica) – Under the federal law known as HIPAA, it’s illegal for health care providers to share patients’ treatment information without their permission. The Office for Civil Rights, the arm of the Department of Health and Human Services responsible for enforcing the law, receives more than 30,000 reports about privacy violations each year. The bulk of the government’s enforcement — and the public’s attention — has focused on a small number of splashy cases in which hackers or thieves have accessed the health data of large groups of people. But the damage done in these mass breaches has been mostly hypothetical, with much information exposed, but little exploited.
(New York Times) – As doctors, we pound on an old woman’s chest, breaking ribs and expelling gastric contents, in hopes that her heart will beat again. We tell a young man’s family he won’t get the liver he needs to live. Then just hours later — disturbingly, curiously, miraculously — we have dinner with a co-worker. We answer emails. We fold laundry, play tennis, book train tickets. And the next day, we do it again. But leaving work behind for the day isn’t the hard part. The hard part is leaving one patient’s story behind when you turn to the next.
(The Telegraph) – Britain should be leading the way on genetically editing human embryos the government’s Chief Scientific Adviser has said. Last week more than 150 scientists and campaigners called for a worldwide ban on the practice, claiming it could ‘irrevocably alter the human species’ and lead to a world where inequality and discrimination were ‘inscribed onto the human genome.’ But at a conference in London yesterday, Sir Mark Walport, who advises the government on scientific matters, said he believed there were ‘circumstances’ in which the genetic editing of human embyros could be ‘acceptable’.
(Quartz) – Modern bioethics is in part a response to cases of horrific human experimentation, as in Nazi Germany and Tuskegee. Breathtaking wrongs like these have compelled medical schools today to assemble ethical review boards to approve and monitor research, according to Janet Stemwedel, a philosopher at San Jose State University. But agriculture involves “a much more controversial class of patients: natural entities, the land, the soil, the environment, animals,” Robert Streiffer, a bioethicist and philosopher at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, tells Quartz. “And the status of those is more in dispute than human patients in the medical sense.”
(CBC) – Quebec will go ahead with its medically assisted dying law tomorrow, as planned. Health Minister Gaétan Barrette confirmed that will happen after a decision by the Quebec Court of Appeal Wednesday afternoon. “Bill , as we know it, will go into effect starting tomorrow, Dec. 10,” Barrette said. Barrette said the law will remain in effect at least until Dec. 18, when the Court of Appeal will hear arguments from all sides on last week’s decision by the Quebec Superior Court which suspended key aspects of the new law.
(Eurekalert) – The hormone estrogen helps protect memory and promote a healthy brain, but this effect wanes as women age, and even estrogen replacement therapy stops working in humans after age 65. Now researchers at University of Florida Health have used gene therapy in a rat model to show that the expression of a particular receptor can reinstate lost memory function.
(U.S. News & World Report) – Many cardiac arrest patients can no longer count on getting a life-saving generic heart drug because it has become too costly for some hospitals to stock, a witness will tell a congressional committee Wednesday. The drug, isoproterenol hydrochloride, sells for $2,700 a vial, up from $50 just two years ago, Erin Fox, director of the Drug Information Service at the University of Utah Health Care, will tell members of the Senate Special Committee on Aging. The increase would have driven the academic health care network’s costs for the one drug to $1.6 million, an amount that the university couldn’t recoup from the managed care plans that cover most of its patients.
New Genetics and Society (vol. 34, no. 4, 2015) is available online by subscription only.
- “Beyond and Within Public Engagement: A Broadened Approach to Engagement in Biobanking” by Jose A. Canada, Aaro Tupasela, and Karoliina Snell
- “Adoptable Packages and the Cost of Their Adoption: The Craftwork of Making the Right Cells for Regenerative Medicine in Japan” by Koichi Mikami
- “Parent’s Expectations and Experiences of Resemblance through Donor Conception” by Astrid Indekeu
- “Closure of a Human Tissue Biobank: Individual, Institutional, and Field Expectations During Cycles of Promise and Disappointment” by Neil Stephens and Rebecca Dimond
Science and Engineering Ethics (vol. 21, no. 6, 2015) is available online by subscription only.
- “Variations in Scientific Data Production: What Can We Learn from #Overlyhonestmethods?” by Louise Bezuidenhout
- “Hospital Ethics Committees in Poland” by Marek Czarkowski, Katarzyna Kaczmarczyk, and Beata Szymanska
- A Troubled Solution: Medical Student Struggles with Evidence and Industry Bias” by Kelly Joslin Holloway
HEC Forum (vol. 27, no. 4, 2015) is available online by subscription only.
- “WTF WHO?” by James Stacey Taylor
- “The Gift Relationship Revisited” by Jeremy Frank Shearmur
- “Errors and Omissions: Donor Compensation Policies and Richard Titmuss” by Joshua Penrod and Albert Farrugia
- “Money for Blood and Markets for Blood” by Simon Derpmann and Michael Quante
- “Blood Products and the Commodification Debate: The Blurry Concept of Altruism and the ‘Implicit Price’ of Readily Available Body Parts” by Annette Dufner
- “‘I Can’t Eat if I Don’t Plass’: Impoverished Plasma Donors, Alternatives, and Autonomy
- “Does Remuneration for Plasma Compromise Autonomy” by Lucie White
- “Compensation for Blood Plasma Donation as a Distinctive Ethical Hazard: Reformulating the Commodification Objection” by Adrian Walsh
- “The Ethics of Paid Plasma Donation: A Plea for Patient Centeredness” by Albert Farrugia, Joshua Penrod, and Jan M. Bult
(Washington Post) – Nearly one-third of doctors in the early stages of their careers screened positive for depression or had symptoms during their medical training, according to a comprehensive international review released Tuesday. Researchers said the prevalence of depression was much higher among medical residents than the general population. They focused on the years of internship and residency, which come right after medical school and are marked by long hours, intense on-the-job training, high levels of responsibility for patient care but low rank within a medical team.
(Nature) – The figures show that in 2014, the NIH funded 164 projects using the tissue, at a cost of $76 million. This is slightly less than half of what the agency spent on work with human embryonic stem cells (ES cells), which has also been highly controversial, and 0.27% of the $27.9 billion it spent on all research. (By comparison, the UK Medical Research Council spent 0.16% — £1.24 million ($1.9 million) — of its total spending on research on five projects involving fetal tissue in the 12 months up to 31 March 2015.) Analysis of the NIH projects shows that the tissue is used most heavily for research on infectious diseases, especially HIV/AIDS; in the study of retinal function and disease; and in studies of normal and anomalous fetal development.
(Nature) – Japan has been working feverishly to stay at the cutting edge of research and clinical applications in regenerative medicine. It has invested billions of yen in induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells — made by reprogramming an individual’s adult cells so that they can develop into any body tissue — and has overhauled its drug regulations to create a fast track to bring regenerative therapies to market.