Meeting the challenges of using automated second opinions

By Hendrik Kempt and Saskia K. Nagel. Diagnostics is a difficult inferential process requiring an immense amount of cognitive labor. Not only must physicians gather evidence and evaluate that evidence to fit the symptoms of a patient, they usually need to do that with imperfect knowledge in an ever changing field of research, and limited […]

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Respecting autonomy in altered states: Navigating ethical quandaries in psychedelic therapy

By Hannah McLane, Courtney Hutchison, Daniel Wikler, Timothy Howell, & Emma Knighton. Research into psychedelic-assisted therapy has grown in the past ten years as non-profits, academic institutions, pharmaceutical companies, and even venture capitalists race to develop protocols for using MDMA, psilocybin, ketamine, and other psychedelic substances to treat mental illness. Already, dozens of ketamine clinics […]

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Ethically inconsistent marketing of communication and resolution programs

By Doug Wojcieszak  The movement to encourage physicians to disclose, apologize, and make amends (financial and otherwise) following medical errors is gaining momentum, especially in the United States.  Many people are supporting this movement, including a large and growing collection of healthcare, insurance, and legal professionals and patient advocates who call themselves the “Collaborative for […]

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Let the patient speak! The need for patient-developed concepts of empowerment

By Brenda Bogaert We talk so much about patient empowerment today that it is hard to imagine that the concept only became part of healthcare policy in the past few decades. How did patient empowerment come to be discussed and conceptualised? And what has been the patient’s involvement in this process? Firstly, it is important […]

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The prisoner’s dilemma: The role of medical professionals in executions

By L. Elisabeth Armstrong A March 2021 Op-Ed in Washington Post asserts that Capital Punishment is ending in America. With twenty-three states abolishing the practice, another three institutionalizing moratoriums, and serious debate surrounding a moratorium on federal executions, it might seem that this is the case. However, much of the country continues to advance the […]

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Would you or rather not? Affected persons in Germany and Israel have mixed opinions regarding predictive testing and early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease

By Zümrüt Alpinar-Sencan, Silke Schicktanz, Natalie Ulitsa and Perla Werner. The availability of a test that would predict the likelihood of developing Alzheimer’s disease (AD) in the next ten years is a thrilling possibility. Thanks to the recent advances in biomarkers (biological markers, which are measurable indicators of a biological state or condition) research and […]

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Eugenics and reproductive carrier screening: why would you go there?

By Lisa Dive & Ainsley J Newson. It seems that one of the best ways a bioethics academic can attract an avalanche of very strong opinions is to publish a paper with the word “eugenics” in the title. Why then would we do so? In short, because we consider it important to pay attention to […]

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How to apply the MCA capacity criteria more transparently and reliably

By Scott Kim, Nuala Kane, Alex Ruck Keene, Gareth Owen. A lot is at stake in a mental capacity evaluation. An error can lead to a capacitous adult’s decision being ignored or even overruled, or to a vulnerable, incapacitous person being abandoned to their ‘rights.’ Unfortunately, there is no simple formula that generates the right […]

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CIA exploited incarcerated Black Americans in race for “mind-control” agent

By Dana Strauss and Monnica Williams. A well-kept American secret is that the CIA-funded research that exploited incarcerated Black Americans along with other vulnerable groups in America’s hunt for a “mind-control” drug. Arising from fears that LSD could be used as a form of biochemical warfare during the cold war and that the Soviets had […]

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Conscientious Non-Referral

By Samuel Reis-Dennis and Abram Brummett. The year is 1950. A married couple living in the United States bring their 12-year-old daughter to a paediatric surgeon with a concern: their daughter has been masturbating. Despite the paediatrician’s explanation that such behaviour is not abnormal or unhealthy, the parents request that the surgeon perform a clitoridectomy. […]

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