More in Ethics

Ethical Navigation of Patient Refusal of Treatment for Religious Reasons

Ethical Navigation of Patient Refusal of Treatment for Religious Reasons

While physicians must respect patient autonomy, they have a professional commitment to provide medical intervention when possible.

Guidelines for Health Initiative-Faith-Based Organization Partnerships

Guidelines for Health Initiative-Faith-Based Organization Partnerships

Often central to communities, faith-based organizations serve as local touchstones for health initiatives and outreach programs.

Ethical Guidelines for Living Donor Transplantation

Ethical Guidelines for Living Donor Transplantation

The Belmont Report provides an appropriate framework for living donor organ transplantation.

The Halford Case Controversy: Are Institutional Review Board Regulations Too Strict?

The Halford Case Controversy: Are Institutional Review Board Regulations Too Strict?

William Halford, PhD, reportedly administered a live attenuated herpes simplex virus vaccine to 17 participants at an off-campus hotel without approval from an institutional review board.

Should Possible Cosmetic Outcomes Influence Strategies in Burn Treatment?

Should Possible Cosmetic Outcomes Influence Strategies in Burn Treatment?

What is the most ethically sound treatment when a patient is sedated and does not have a healthcare power of attorney?

Hep B Core Antibody-Positive Organs May Provide Solutions to the Organ Donor Crisis

Hep B Core Antibody-Positive Organs May Provide Solutions to the Organ Donor Crisis

Hepatitis B core Antibody (anti-HB c+) organs may be a safe and ethical transplant option in an era where increased medical knowledge has enabled greater treatment for hepatitis.

Mental Health Organizations Urge Administration to Stop Separating Parents and Children at US Border

Mental Health Organizations Urge Administration to Stop Separating Parents and Children at US Border

Citing the high degree of stress and possible lifelong trauma children can experience as the result of a forced separation, the mental health organizations noted that the policy could result in an increased risk for many mental illnesses.

The Value of Social Network Data for Surrogate Decision Making

The Value of Social Network Data for Surrogate Decision Making

Surrogate decision making for patients without decision-making capabilities or advance directives can be a challenging task to take on.

In the Wake of Charlie Gard, Who Decides the Best Interests of Critically Ill Children?

In the Wake of Charlie Gard, Who Decides the Best Interests of Critically Ill Children?

The use of specialist services may allow more equitable solutions to treatment questions in critically ill children as they are less formal and adversarial than the courts.

Strategies in Pain Management for Adult and Pediatric Patients With Burns

Strategies in Pain Management for Adult and Pediatric Patients With Burns

The assessment of pain in patients with burns should be involve slightly similar approaches between adults and children.

Evaluating the Medical Ethics of the FIRST Trial and Other Cluster Randomized Trials

Evaluating the Medical Ethics of the FIRST Trial and Other Cluster Randomized Trials

The FIRST trial was heavily debated in the medical community on publication,

When Parents and Physicians Disagree: Ethical Examinations of Pediatric Life-Sustaining Treatment

When Parents and Physicians Disagree: Ethical Examinations of Pediatric Life-Sustaining Treatment

Clinicians offered perspective on a case regarding a mother who requested discontinuation of life-sustaining treatment for her infant after 7 months of NICU care.

The Ethics of Sharing Study Data With Research Participants

The Ethics of Sharing Study Data With Research Participants

In an era of larger-scale studies and increased data digitization, the question of which information is appropriate to disclose has become a focal point in medical ethics.

The Inhumane Practice of Constant Light Exposure in Immigrant Detention Facilities

The Inhumane Practice of Constant Light Exposure in Immigrant Detention Facilities

The practice of family separations has been described by the president of the American Academy of Pediatrics as a "form of child abuse."

Guidelines for Physicians in Navigating Aid-in-Dying Requests

Guidelines for Physicians in Navigating Aid-in-Dying Requests

Physician aid in dying is a divisive topic in the medical community, and even physicians who support the practice may only do so conditionally.

Addressing Conceptions of Hymenoplasty Among Healthcare Providers

Addressing Conceptions of Hymenoplasty Among Healthcare Providers

Among some communities, hymenoplasty is seen as a "pragmatic choice" for women to conform to societal conceptions of virginity.

Does Right to Try Legislation Improve on Existing Compassionate Use Programs?

Does Right to Try Legislation Improve on Existing Compassionate Use Programs?

While politicians celebrate the passage of the Right to Try Act, physicians must closely monitor the outcomes to mitigate the potential consequences of this law.

The Ethical Argument Against Publishing Medical Research: What Responsibility Do Journal Editors Have?

The Ethical Argument Against Publishing Medical Research: What Responsibility Do Journal Editors Have?

There is growing concern regarding the power of the written word, specifically those words that are printed in medical journals.

Examining the Moral and Ethical Justification of Pornography Access in Fertility Clinics

Examining the Moral and Ethical Justification of Pornography Access in Fertility Clinics

The feminist and legal arguments against pornography, particularly images and videos featuring women, is that it results in the continuation of gender-based inequality.

Do the Deceased Have Rights to Autonomy? An Ethical Examination of Posthumous Conception

Do the Deceased Have Rights to Autonomy? An Ethical Examination of Posthumous Conception

Posthumous sperm collection should only be used in cases where there is a well-established relationship with a partner before death.

AMA Adopts Ethical Guidance on Medical Tourism

AMA Adopts Ethical Guidance on Medical Tourism

Medical tourism can complicate ethical expectations regarding patients' rights, including informed consent, continuity of care, and access to medical records.

Mining Patient Emergency Contact Data for Medical Research Raises Ethical Questions

Mining Patient Emergency Contact Data for Medical Research Raises Ethical Questions

Being someone's emergency contact may mean even more as researchers use this information to study the heritability of various conditions.

Judge and Jury: Who Decides What Makes a "Bad Doctor?"

Judge and Jury: Who Decides What Makes a "Bad Doctor?"

The internet has made it easier than ever for patients to search for physicians, but what happens when an innocent search yields horrific results?

Denial of Medically Necessary Gender-Affirming Surgeries Hurts US Veterans

Denial of Medically Necessary Gender-Affirming Surgeries Hurts US Veterans

Gender-affirming surgery is the only medically necessary intervention specifically denied to US armed services veterans.

Balancing Patients' Right to Privacy With the Educational Needs of Medical Students

Balancing Patients' Right to Privacy With the Educational Needs of Medical Students

Case study authors review the ethical and legal considerations of a medical student accessing a patient electronic health record after the patient is no longer in the student's care.

Applying a Bioethical Framework to Physician-Family Conflicts in Treatment Cessation

Applying a Bioethical Framework to Physician-Family Conflicts in Treatment Cessation

As a highly delicate and case-sensitive issue, cessation of treatment for non-competent patients will continue to be central to the medical and bioethics communities.

Should Physicians Treat Family and Friends? Three Experts Weigh In

Should Physicians Treat Family and Friends? Three Experts Weigh In

Although all of the guidelines acknowledge that there are emergent situations in which providing care for a family member or friend is not only permissible but also essential, other situations are frowned upon.

Addressing Confidentiality Concerns With Electronic Access to Pediatric Medical Records

Addressing Confidentiality Concerns With Electronic Access to Pediatric Medical Records

As OpenNotes and similar patient portal systems gain traction, pediatricians examined the optimal way to afford transparency to parents while preserving patient confidentiality for minors.

Discrepancies Noted in Financial Disclosures Among Academic Physician-Directors

Discrepancies Noted in Financial Disclosures Among Academic Physician-Directors

Continued improvement in payment reporting mechanisms is crucial to meet the benchmarks set by the Physician Payments Sunshine Act.

More Hospitals Mandating Influenza Vaccines for Healthcare Workers, Survey Says

More Hospitals Mandating Influenza Vaccines for Healthcare Workers, Survey Says

Results still indicate a trajectory toward stricter infection prevention at hospitals in general, and highlight a possible need for increased vaccine mandates.

Human Challenge Studies in Infectious Disease: Despite Need for Rigorous Oversight, Studies Are Vital

Human Challenge Studies in Infectious Disease: Despite Need for Rigorous Oversight, Studies Are Vital

Barriers to challenge studies include ethical guidelines indicating that the generation of scientific knowledge should never supersede the rights and interests of research subjects.

What Role Do Trauma Physicians Play in Facilitating Organ Donations?

What Role Do Trauma Physicians Play in Facilitating Organ Donations?

Although organ donation is important and is considered a public good, trauma physicians are charged first and foremost with restoring and maintaining the health of their patients.

Keeping Politics Out of Patient Care: Interview With Anupam B. Jena, MD

Keeping Politics Out of Patient Care: Interview With Anupam B. Jena, MD

To shed further light on the study's implications, MPR interviewed lead author Anupam B. Jena, MD, PhD, Ruth L. Newhouse Associate Professor, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.

How Many Chances Are Too Many? Treating Recurrent Infective Endocarditis in IV Drug Users

How Many Chances Are Too Many? Treating Recurrent Infective Endocarditis in IV Drug Users

How many second chances should a drug user get? As many as it takes for us — physicians, society, government, and the healthcare system — to get it right.

The Value of Low-Quality Infertility Care in Regions With Infrastructure Deficits

The Value of Low-Quality Infertility Care in Regions With Infrastructure Deficits

The case study focused on the story of a clinician who arrived in Lebanon to discuss how to best offer infertility treatment to Syrian refugees in the region.

Ethical Dilemmas Vary Based on Physician Professional Values, Social Regulations

Ethical Dilemmas Vary Based on Physician Professional Values, Social Regulations

Study investigators asked physicians whether they perceived specific clinical examples as an ethical dilemma.

Widespread Lack of Understanding of Disease Risk Factors, Research Needs in Incarcerated Populations

Widespread Lack of Understanding of Disease Risk Factors, Research Needs in Incarcerated Populations

Incarcerated individuals are underrepresented in health research, resulting in poor understanding of risk factors for disease

Prisoners to Parental Incarceration: How Do Incarceration Rates Affect Infant Mortality?

Prisoners to Parental Incarceration: How Do Incarceration Rates Affect Infant Mortality?

The staggering number of incarcerated Americans has inspired an avalanche of studies demonstrating how patterns of imprisonment exacerbate inequality and affect the life chances of entire families.

Defining Normal: An Ethical Responsibility in Surgery

Defining Normal: An Ethical Responsibility in Surgery

In the past few years, Snapchat has allowed plastic surgeons to showcase labiaplasty surgical procedures to a large audience, which has led to ethical concerns.

FDA: Draft Guidance for the Inclusion of Pregnant Women in Clinical Trials

FDA: Draft Guidance for the Inclusion of Pregnant Women in Clinical Trials

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued draft guidance for industry regarding the science and ethics of including pregnant women in drug development clinical trials.

Greater Credibility Needed in Investigations of Scientific Misconduct Reports

Greater Credibility Needed in Investigations of Scientific Misconduct Reports

There are substantial limitations to depending only on institutional investigations of scientific misconduct.

UK National Health Service Explores Justification for Rationing Elective Surgery in Smokers, Obesity

UK National Health Service Explores Justification for Rationing Elective Surgery in Smokers, Obesity

Recent measures in the United Kingdom have proposed restricting access to elective surgery for smokers and people with obesity.

Health Care in Low-Income Settings Leads to Ethical, Financial Dilemmas

Health Care in Low-Income Settings Leads to Ethical, Financial Dilemmas

Difficult trade-offs are often necessary in low-income areas where health care is paid for out of pocket.

Should Genealogy Data Be Used for Criminal Justice Purposes?

Should Genealogy Data Be Used for Criminal Justice Purposes?

Informed consent, privacy, and justice concerns are 3 issues that should be addressed before the use of online genealogy data in criminal cases becomes widely adopted.

Court-Mandated Substance Abuse Treatment: Exploring the Ethics and Efficacy

Court-Mandated Substance Abuse Treatment: Exploring the Ethics and Efficacy

While many treatments for substance use disorder are not evidence based, several evidence-based approaches have shown effectiveness in court-mandated treatment settings.

Emergency-Only Treatment for Undocumented Immigrants Associated With Moral Distress

Emergency-Only Treatment for Undocumented Immigrants Associated With Moral Distress

Providing emergency-only care to undocumented immigrants has been linked to increased moral distress and burnout in treating physicians.

Ethically Using a Personal "Brand" in Plastic Surgery Advertisements

Ethically Using a Personal "Brand" in Plastic Surgery Advertisements

Although social media advertising is an innovative and useful tool, there are risks to patients who are exposed to a physician's "brand" through social media.

From Needle Exchanges to Supervised Injection: Why Communities Benefit From Supervised Injection Sites

From Needle Exchanges to Supervised Injection: Why Communities Benefit From Supervised Injection Sites

Like needle exchanges before them, supervised injection sites have been shown to decrease the harms associated with injection drug use.

Supervised Injection Sites Hailed as the Latest Strategy to Fight the Opioid Crisis

Supervised Injection Sites Hailed as the Latest Strategy to Fight the Opioid Crisis

Although they are against the law, supervised injection sites are slated to open in Seattle, San Francisco, and Philadelphia in 2018.

Dismiss or Don't? Ethical Considerations of Dismissing Vaccine-Refusing Families

Dismiss or Don't? Ethical Considerations of Dismissing Vaccine-Refusing Families

Dismissing the children of vaccine-refusing families does not address the fundamental issue of vaccine refusal.

What a Building Contractor Taught Me About Informed Consent

What a Building Contractor Taught Me About Informed Consent

Identifying a patient's preferences and goals leads to a care plan that can reflect those goals, and this may improve patient satisfaction.

The Pilot, the Physician, and the Whistleblower: When Is it Okay to Sound the Alarm?

The Pilot, the Physician, and the Whistleblower: When Is it Okay to Sound the Alarm?

Airplane cockpits have a lot in common with operating rooms: both host a small team that's trusted to perform an extraordinarily complex task with the clear understanding that any misstep could spell doom.

Medicine and Conscience Intersect at the Department of Health and Human Services

Medicine and Conscience Intersect at the Department of Health and Human Services

The Department of Health and Human Services has announced the creation of the Conscience and Religious Freedom Division within the HHS Office of Civil Rights.

Managing Medical Requests From Family and Friends

Managing Medical Requests From Family and Friends

Fielding medical requests from friends and family can be a complex issue for physicians to navigate.

Underreporting of Conflicts of Interest Likely at FDA Advisory Committee Meetings

Underreporting of Conflicts of Interest Likely at FDA Advisory Committee Meetings

Approximately one-quarter of public speakers presenting at the Anesthetic and Analgesic Drug Products Advisor Committee Meetings have conflicts of interest.

The Ethics of Upcoding: Does Illegality Matter?

The Ethics of Upcoding: Does Illegality Matter?

Upcoding is universally illegal, but that doesn't stop physicians and nurses the world over from labeling a simple infection as septicemia or pretending that a routine office visit involves a comprehensive evaluation.

Do Not Resuscitate: Examining the Ethics of Overriding DNR Orders During Surgery

Do Not Resuscitate: Examining the Ethics of Overriding DNR Orders During Surgery

The role of an anesthesiologist during surgery is not solely to make the patient more comfortable: if a patient becomes hemodynamically unstable, the anesthesiologist is required to administer CPR — sometimes against a patient's wishes.

ACP: Recommendations to Combat Negative Hidden Curricula in Medicine

ACP: Recommendations to Combat Negative Hidden Curricula in Medicine

In medicine, there is often a disconnect between what is taught in the classroom and what students observe in clinical practice.

CVS Unintentionally Reveals HIV Status of 6000 Customers

CVS Unintentionally Reveals HIV Status of 6000 Customers

CVS Health faces lawsuit for revealing the HIV status of 6000 patients in Ohio.

Physician-Family Conflicts Common When Caring for Patients in a Vegetative State

Physician-Family Conflicts Common When Caring for Patients in a Vegetative State

Differing visions and expectations often lead to clashes between medical teams and families of patients diagnosed with unresponsive wakefulness syndrome.

Personal Health Info Found in Recycling at 5 Hospitals

Personal Health Info Found in Recycling at 5 Hospitals

Nearly 600 kg of recycling was recovered, including over 2500 documents with personally identifiable health information.

Psychology in the Age of Trump: Does the Goldwater Rule Still Apply?

Psychology in the Age of Trump: Does the Goldwater Rule Still Apply?

The Goldwater Rule has proven remarkably resilient and has not been seriously challenged for half a century — until now.

Point and Counterpoint: Ethics and Legality of Pediatric Euthanasia

Point and Counterpoint: Ethics and Legality of Pediatric Euthanasia

Belgium and the Netherlands currently allow variations on pediatric euthanasia, stoking the worldwide debate surrounding the practice.

Genetics: To Test or Not to Test? That is the Question

Genetics: To Test or Not to Test? That is the Question

Even when presuming that there is a "right to test," concerns arise that patients will be misguided in their decisions based on poorly validated direct to consumer genetic tests.

"Deemed Consent" to Facilitate Organ Procurement: Is It Ethical?

"Deemed Consent" to Facilitate Organ Procurement: Is It Ethical?

A "deemed consent" law was recently enacted in Wales as part of efforts to improve rates of organ procurement.

For the Greater Good: Examining the Ethical Obligation of Public Participation in Health Research

For the Greater Good: Examining the Ethical Obligation of Public Participation in Health Research

Although privacy issues are important, public interest in innovation and affordable healthcare may take precedence.

Religious Exemption vs Public Health: Taking Vaccination Exemptions Too Far

Religious Exemption vs Public Health: Taking Vaccination Exemptions Too Far

Lawyers make things complicated — including policies requiring mandatory influenza vaccinations for healthcare workers.

Drawing the Line: Where Religious Liberty Ends and Patient Rights Begin

Drawing the Line: Where Religious Liberty Ends and Patient Rights Begin

The concept of conscientious objection has been appropriated by health care professionals who refuse to perform certain tasks related to female reproductive health.

Promises, Challenges of Digital Medication Adherence Monitoring Revealed

Promises, Challenges of Digital Medication Adherence Monitoring Revealed

Abilify MyCite sends messages to a removable patch to track patient medication adherence.

What's Torture Good For? Absolutely Nothing

What's Torture Good For? Absolutely Nothing

Torture has always had its place as a two-faced mythical creature in American society, but no neuroscientific backing for the practice exists.

An Epidemic of Violence: Treating a Contagious Health Problem

An Epidemic of Violence: Treating a Contagious Health Problem

Researchers argue that violence is best treated as an epidemic health problem.

Successful Academia-Intelligence Agency Classroom Collaboration Raises Ethical Concerns

Successful Academia-Intelligence Agency Classroom Collaboration Raises Ethical Concerns

Researchers partnered with the National Security Agency to examine social, ethical, and pedagogical considerations surrounding prototype intelligence technology use.

Researchers Call for Widespread Inclusion of Conflict-of-Interest Disclosures in Manuscripts

Researchers Call for Widespread Inclusion of Conflict-of-Interest Disclosures in Manuscripts

More than 20% of articles included in a cross-sectional study included conflict-of-interest disclosures.

When Hard Cases Make Bad Law: Evidence-Based Recommendations vs Legal Precedence for Resuscitation of Premature Infants

When Hard Cases Make Bad Law: Evidence-Based Recommendations vs Legal Precedence for Resuscitation of Premature Infants

The decision to resuscitate an extremely premature newborn is governed by a patchwork of state-level laws that are not necessarily grounded in evidence-based medicine.

Sexual Orientation Monitoring in Health Care Settings: When Should Clinicians Ask?

Sexual Orientation Monitoring in Health Care Settings: When Should Clinicians Ask?

Two clinicians sound off regarding proposed sexual orientation monitoring in health and social care settings.

Federal Right-to-Try Legislation Could Undermine FDA's Public Health Mission

Federal Right-to-Try Legislation Could Undermine FDA's Public Health Mission

Recent "right-to-try" legislation passed in the Senate could diminish the FDA's public health mission.

Counseling Patients About Firearms in the Home: What Is the Physician's Role?

Counseling Patients About Firearms in the Home: What Is the Physician's Role?

Physicians should be aware of state laws pertaining to firearm counseling, temporary transfer, and safe storage.

A New Code of Ethics for Clinical Trial Research in the 21st Century

A New Code of Ethics for Clinical Trial Research in the 21st Century

Recent revisions to the Common Rule deal largely with improving transparency of informed consent while introducing a new concept of "broad consent" that can expand the reach of research.

Psychiatric Genetic Testing May Be Beneficial for Some Minors

Psychiatric Genetic Testing May Be Beneficial for Some Minors

Researchers identified 5 nonmedical themes that affect the decision to implement predictive genetic testing for psychiatric conditions.

Overdiagnosis in Medicine: What We Owe Our Patients

Overdiagnosis in Medicine: What We Owe Our Patients

Physicians need to think about ethical problems in a way that allows a balance of competing priorities and also leaves room for personalized decision-making.

System-Level Reform Needed to Appropriately Allocate Resources for Hospital-Dependent Patients

System-Level Reform Needed to Appropriately Allocate Resources for Hospital-Dependent Patients

Reform is necessary to balance the health needs of hospital-dependent patients with those of the larger hospital community.

Nutrition Research Requires More Transparency of Conflicts of Interest

Nutrition Research Requires More Transparency of Conflicts of Interest

Researchers should disclose conflicts of interest that present bias toward a specific organization, industry, or dietary behavior.

Should Physicians Facilitate Lethal Injection Executions?

Should Physicians Facilitate Lethal Injection Executions?

While some support physician participation in lethal injection, others view it as a clear violation of the Hippocratic Oath.

Planning Clinical Trial Designs for Future Public Health Epidemics

Planning Clinical Trial Designs for Future Public Health Epidemics

Investigators should plan for future public health epidemics so that consensus about trial design and conduct among agencies and local communities can be reached before the next outbreak.

Gender Bias Affects Clinical Decision-Making in Patients with Suspected Coronary Artery Disease

Gender Bias Affects Clinical Decision-Making in Patients with Suspected Coronary Artery Disease

Cardiologists have varying degrees of implicit gender bias, which explains some of the gender differences in clinical decision-making for suspected CAD.

Assessing Medical Age of Children Seeking Asylum: Legal and Ethical Challenges

Assessing Medical Age of Children Seeking Asylum: Legal and Ethical Challenges

Determining whether or not an individual is a minor can be difficult when reliable documentation is lacking.

Protecting Patient Rights When Complying With Law Enforcement

Protecting Patient Rights When Complying With Law Enforcement

Medical professionals can be caught between the legal and ethical obligations of informed consent and the legal obligations of complying with law enforcement orders.

Cancer Survivors Face Difficulty Obtaining Insurance Coverage for Fertility Preservation

Cancer Survivors Face Difficulty Obtaining Insurance Coverage for Fertility Preservation

Recent legislation in several states passed legislation requiring insurance companies to cover fertility preservation services.

Ethical Implications of Voluntary Refusal to Eat or Drink

Ethical Implications of Voluntary Refusal to Eat or Drink

The researchers note that VSED has a distinct time frame allowing patients and families to say goodbye and work on issues relating to life closure. The initial states of VSED are mainly under the patient's control, and most of the process is driven and executed by the patient.

Ethical Implications of Acute Care-Oriented Research in Resource-Limited Settings

Ethical Implications of Acute Care-Oriented Research in Resource-Limited Settings

Successful implementation of distributive justice and beneficence are essential for research in developing countries.

Careful Design of ECT Research Important for Ethical Concerns

Careful Design of ECT Research Important for Ethical Concerns

Although electroconvulsive therapy is effective for patients with severe psychiatric disorders, various misconceptions still exist.

Medical School Training Has Various Effects on Empathy in Students

Medical School Training Has Various Effects on Empathy in Students

Although some research shows that empathy decreases over the course of medical school training, other evidence suggests that certain aspects of empathy improve throughout training.

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