A Quick Question about Conscientious Objection

Baroness O’Loan’s Conscientious Objection Bill had its second reading in the House of Lords yesterday.  It’s only short, but there’s a part of it that I find a little perplexing. Section 1(1) says that No medical practitioner with a conscientious objection to participating in— (a)  the withdrawal of life-sustaining treatment; (b)  any activity under the […]

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Consent and the Ethical Duty to Participate in Health Data Research

Guest Post: Angela Ballantyne and G. Owen Schaefer Paper: Consent and the ethical duty to participate in health data research Health systems are producing exponentially more data about patients and there is increasing demand to use that data – for predictive modelling, precision medicine, funding decisions and health system design. One of the features that makes […]

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Past Health is Relevant in Priority-setting

Guest Post: Samuel Altman, University of Oxford Full Article: Against Proportional Shortfall as a Priority-Setting Principle Past health is regularly considered irrelevant in priority-setting decisions. Often, people mistakenly think of past health, or rather past ill-health, as a ‘sunk’ cost which can be ignored when making decisions about present and future health. However, past health is […]

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Toby Young, Eugenics, IQ, and the Poor (part 2)

Having staked out the claim in my last post that even if Toby Young’s claims about intelligence and embryo selection in his essay are eugenic, that’s not the end of the moral argument, I’m now going to have a quick look at the reasons why I think his claim does fail.  The roots of the failure […]

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Toby Young, Eugenics, IQ, and the Poor (part 1)

The response to Toby Young’s appointment to the new Office for Students has covered the whole range from “He’s not the best person for the job” to “He’s the worst person for the job”.  Some of the reasons offered have to do with unsavoury comments about women; some have to do with his general lack […]

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New Scientist is Not Amused

You might remember the couple of days a few years ago in which the overlyhonestmethods hashtag went viral on Twitter: for those of you who don’t, it was a little joke in which academics – mainly, I think, natural scientists – made not-entirely-serious “confessions” about how they do their work and the corners they might […]

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The Real Problem With Human Head Transplantation

Guest Post: Michael S. Dauber, MA * Note: this article is being cross-posted at the Practical Ethics blog.  In 2015, Sergio Canavero announced that he would perform a therapeutic head transplant procedure on a human subject by December 2017. Since then, he has recruited the assistance of surgeon Xiaoping Ren and switched from Valery Spiridonov to an […]

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Ethics of Fertility Preservation for Prepubertal Children: Should Clinicians Offer Procedures Where Efficacy is Largely Unproven?

Guest Post: Rosalind J McDougall, Lynn Gillam, Clare Delany, Yasmin Jayasinghe Article: Ethics of fertility preservation for prepubertal children: should clinicians offer procedures where efficacy is largely unproven? Should we offer a procedure with so little evidence? Isn’t it burdening a sick child without real justification? But it’s often low risk – if we don’t offer, are we depriving the […]

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Pedophilia and Child Sexual Abuse Are Two Different Things — Confusing Them is Harmful to Children

By Brian D. Earp (@briandavidearp) Note: this post appeared first at the Practical Ethics blog and is being re-posted. Pedophilia and Child Sexual Abuse Are Two Different Things — Confusing Them is Harmful to Children Republican politician Roy Moore has been accused of initiating sexual contact with a 14-year-old girl when he was in his early […]

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