Journal of Medical Ethics (vol. 43, no. 8, 2017) is available online by subscription only.
- “Euthanasia Embedded in Palliative Care. Responses to Essentialistic Criticisms of the Belgian Model of Integral End-of-Life Care” by Jan L Bernheim and Kasper Raus
- “The Moral Agency of Institutions: Effectively Using Expert Nurses to Support Patient Autonomy” by Sonya Charles
- “Income-Based Equity Weights in Healthcare Planning and Policy” by Anders Herlitz
- “Breastfeeding and Defeasible Duties to Benefit” by Fiona Woollard and Lindsey Porter
- “To Stop or Not to Stop: Dissent and Undue Burden as Reasons to Stop Participation in Paediatric Research” by Wendy Bos, Anna Westra, Inez de Beaufort, and Suzanne van de Vathorst
- “Patients’ Views of Consent in Clinical Trials for Acute Myocardial Infarction: Impact of Trial Design” by Neal W Dickert, Kristopher A Hendershot, Candace D Speight, and Alexandra E Fehr
- “Are Positive Experiences of Children in Non-Therapeutic Research Justifiable Research Benefits?” by Mira S Staphorst, Joke A M Hunfeld, and Suzanne van de Vathorst
- “Parents Perspectives on Whole Genome Sequencing for Their Children: Qualified Enthusiasm?” by J A Anderson et al.
- “Whole Genome Sequencing in Children: Ethics, Choice and Deliberation” by Ainsley J Newson
- “Trajectories to Seeking Demedicalised Assistance in Suicide: A Qualitative In-Depth Interview Study” by Martijn Hagens, Bregje D Onwuteaka-Philipsen, and H Roeline W Pasman
- “Epistemic Injustice in Healthcare Encounters: Evidence from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome” by Charlotte Blease, Havi Carel, and Keith Geraghty
JAMA (vol. 318, no. 5, 2017) is available online by subscription only.
- “The Paradox of Mindfulness: Seamus Heaney’s “St Kevin and the Blackbird” by Kimberly R. Myers
(Vox) – The nurses described doctors performing surgery in hospitals with light from their cellphones, children screaming from hunger, elderly residents suffering from severe dehydration, and black mold spreading throughout entire communities. “We cannot be silent while millions of people continue to endure these conditions,” said Bonnie Castillo, associate executive director of National Nurses United. She said some nurses arrived in towns that never got food or water supplies, or any other help from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Some communities the nurses visited that did get supplies were not getting enough.
(The Guardian) – A woman with a severe learning disability who gave birth after a suspected rape should be fitted with a contraceptive patch against the wishes of her mother, the high court has ruled. The 21-year-old woman, known in court as V, has an unspecified but severe learning disability. Her mother, referred to in court as W, argued against contraception, saying increased protective measures would be enough. But a senior judge has ruled that the mother’s own health issues meant she was unable to give her daughter the necessary protection to prevent another assault.
(STAT News) – I was a perfectly healthy teen, and that unnecessary surgery actually removed my hormone-producing testes. As a result, I’ve needed hormone replacement therapy ever since. But even though I live in a major city renowned for its hospitals, I still haven’t been able to find a qualified endocrinologist to manage my treatment — let alone a physician who understands what it means to be intersex. That’s because medical care for intersex people is overwhelmingly focused on surgical intervention when we’re children and too young to consent. The needs of intersex adults are an afterthought.
(New York Post) – Not only were Mike and Max not identical — they had completely different DNA from one another. Mike appeared to be an Asian child, and was Liu and her husband’s biological baby. But Max, half-white and half African-American, belonged to me and my now-husband, Wardell Jasper, 34, who works for a cable company. It turned out that, in an extremely rare medical incident called superfetation, we had gotten pregnant naturally, despite using condoms, after the in vitro fertilization (IVF) cycle during which Mr. and Mrs. Liu’s embryo was transferred into my uterus.
(Newsweek) – In these tales, modern medicine swoops in to correct things, sending both children off to lead happy, independent lives. But not every case has a completely positive prognosis. Sometimes parents and physicians must make heart-wrenching decisions, such as planning a surgery that will only save one of the lives. It’s a bioethical challenge a team of doctors at MassGeneral Hospital for Children faced when a family from East Africa arrived with their conjoined twin girls, who were just 22 months old.
(BBC) – Scientists have demonstrated an “incredibly powerful” ability to manipulate the building blocks of life in two separate studies. One altered the order of atoms in DNA to rewrite the human genetic code and the instructions for life. The other edited RNA, which is a chemical cousin of DNA and unlocks the information in the genetic code. The studies – which could eventually treat diseases – have been described as clever, important and exciting.
(Reuters) – The month after Cody died, Restore Life sold part of the young man’s body: his cervical spine. The transaction required just a few email exchanges and $300, plus shipping. Whether Restore Life vetted the buyer is unclear. But if workers there had verified their customer’s identity, they would have learned he was a reporter from Reuters. The news agency was seeking to determine how easy it might be to buy human body parts and whether those parts would be useful for medical research. In addition to the spine, Reuters later purchased two human heads from Restore Life, each priced at $300.
(STAT News) – Thienpont’s approach to managing euthanasia requests has raised concerns even among doctors who support the procedure for psychological suffering. According to copies of letters obtained by The Associated Press, those worries have led to a clash between Thienpont and Dr. Wim Distelmans, chairman of Belgium’s euthanasia review commission, that has not been publicly disclosed. The documents do not include accusations that patients were killed who shouldn’t have been, but they suggest doctors may have failed to meet certain legal requirements in some cases. And they highlight how difficult it can be to judge whose pain should end in death.
(BBC) – For nearly two decades Sweden has been battling a mysterious illness. Called Resignation Syndrome, it affects only the children of asylum-seekers, who withdraw completely, ceasing to walk or talk, or open their eyes. Eventually they recover. But why does this only seem to occur in Sweden?
(BBC) – When it comes to taking opioids, the United States has the dubious honour of leading the world. For every one million Americans, almost 50,000 doses of opioids are taken every day. That’s four times the rate in the UK. There are often good reasons for taking opioids. Cancer patients use them for pain relief, as do patients recovering from surgery (codeine and morphine are opioids, for example). But take too many and you have a problem. And America certainly has a problem.In two years, the town of Kermit in West Virginia received almost nine million opioid pills, according to a congressional committee. Just 400 people live in Kermit.