Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy

http://link.springer.com/journal/11019

List of Papers (Total 177)

“That is why I have trust”: unpacking what ‘trust’ means to participants in international genetic research in Pakistan and Denmark

Trust features prominently in a number of policy documents that have been issued in recent years to facilitate data sharing and international collaboration in medical research. However, it often remains unclear what is meant by ‘trust’. By exploring a concrete international collaboration between Denmark and Pakistan, we develop a way of unpacking trust that shifts focus from what ...

Danish sperm donors and the ethics of donation and selection

There has been a great deal of discussion about the ethical implications of donating sperm and of the ways in which donated tissue is presented, selected, and sold for use in assisted reproduction. Debates have emerged within the academic sphere, from donor offspring and recipients, and in broader popular culture, including questions about the commodification of human tissue and ...

Medicalising short children with growth hormone? Ethical considerations of the underlying sociocultural aspects

In 2003, the Food and Drug Administration approved the use of growth hormone treatment for idiopathic short stature children, i.e. children shorter than average due to an unknown medical cause. Given the absence of any pathological conditions, this decision has been contested as a case of medicalisation. The aim of this paper is to broaden the debate over the reasons for and ...

The particularity of dignity: relational engagement in care at the end of life

This paper articulates dignity as relational engagement in concrete care situations. Dignity is often understood as an abstract principle that represents inherent worth of all human beings. In actual care practices, this principle has to be substantiated in order to gain meaning and inform care activities. We describe three exemplary substantiations of the principle of dignity in ...

Genome editing and assisted reproduction: curing embryos, society or prospective parents?

This paper explores the ethics of introducing genome-editing technologies as a new reproductive option. In particular, it focuses on whether genome editing can be considered a morally valuable alternative to preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD). Two arguments against the use of genome editing in reproduction are analysed, namely safety concerns and germline modification. These ...

About the right to be ill

The article raises the issue of ‘the right to be ill’, formulated by Tadeusz Kielanowski, a Polish physician and humanist. According to him, the right to health should be supplemented by the principle which would serve the protection of people with diseases or disabilities. One-sided interpretation of ‘the right to health’ may result in various forms of intolerance and ...

The Care Dialog: the “ethics of care” approach and its importance for clinical ethics consultation

Ethics consultation in institutions of the healthcare system has been given a standard form based on three pillars: education, the development of guidelines and concrete ethics consultation in case conferences. The spread of ethics committees, which perform these tasks on an organizational level, is a remarkable historic achievement. At the same time it cannot be denied that modern ...

Phenomenology of pregnancy and the ethics of abortion

In this article I investigate the ways in which phenomenology could guide our views on the rights and/or wrongs of abortion. To my knowledge very few phenomenologists have directed their attention toward this issue, although quite a few have strived to better understand and articulate the strongly related themes of pregnancy and birth, most often in the context of feminist ...

The impossibility of reliably determining the authenticity of desires: implications for informed consent

It is sometimes argued that autonomous decision-making requires that the decision-maker’s desires are authentic, i.e., “genuine,” “truly her own,” “not out of character,” or similar. In this article, it is argued that a method to reliably determine the authenticity (or inauthenticity) of a desire cannot be developed. A taxonomy of characteristics displayed by different theories of ...

On harm thresholds and living organ donation: must the living donor benefit, on balance, from his donation?

For the majority of scholars concerned with the ethics of living organ donation, inflicting moderate harms on competent volunteers in order to save the lives or increase the life chances of others is held to be justifiable provided certain conditions are met. These conditions tend to include one, or more commonly, some combination of the following: (1) The living donor provides ...

Necessity and least infringement conditions in public health ethics

The influential public health ethics framework proposed by Childress et al. includes five “justificatory conditions,” two of which are “necessity” and “least infringement.” While the framework points to important moral values, we argue it is redundant for it to list both necessity and least infringement because they are logically equivalent. However, it is ambiguous whether ...

Are there moral differences between maternal spindle transfer and pronuclear transfer?

This paper examines whether there are moral differences between the mitochondrial replacement techniques that have been recently developed in order to help women afflicted by mitochondrial DNA diseases to have genetically related children absent such conditions: maternal spindle transfer (MST) and pronuclear transfer (PNT). Firstly, it examines whether there is a moral difference ...

Suffering and dying well: on the proper aim of palliative care

In recent years a large empirical literature has appeared on suffering at the end of life. In this literature it is recognized that suffering has existential and social dimensions in addition to physical and psychological ones. The non-physical aspects of suffering, however, are still understood as pathological symptoms, to be reduced by therapeutical interventions as much as ...

Inspectors’ ethical challenges in health care regulation: a pilot study

There is an increasing body of research on what kind of ethical challenges health care professionals experience regarding the quality of care. In the Netherlands the Dutch Health Care Inspectorate is responsible for monitoring and regulating the quality of health care. No research exists on what kind of ethical challenges inspectors experience during the regulation process itself. ...

Tragedy in moral case deliberation

In healthcare practice, care providers are confronted with tragic situations, in which they are expected to make choices and decisions that can have far-reaching consequences. This article investigates the role of moral case deliberation (MCD) in dealing with tragic situations. It focuses on experiences of care givers involved in the treatment of a pregnant woman with a brain ...

Empathizing with patients: the role of interaction and narratives in providing better patient care

Recent studies have revealed a drop in the ability of physicians to empathize with their patients. It is argued that empathy training needs to be provided to both medical students and physicians in order to improve patient care. While it may be true that empathy would lead to better patient care, it is important that the right theory of empathy is being encouraged. This paper ...

“We need to talk!” Barriers to GPs’ communication about the option of physician-assisted suicide and their ethical implications: results from a qualitative study

GPs usually care for their patients for an extended period of time, therefore, requests to not only discontinue a patient’s treatment but to assist a patient in a suicide are likely to create intensely stressful situations for physicians. However, in order to ensure the best patient care possible, the competent communication about the option of physician assisted suicide (PAS) as ...

Permitting patients to pay for participation in clinical trials: the advent of the P4 trial

In this article we explore the ethical issues raised by permitting patients to pay for participation (P4) in clinical trials, and discuss whether there are any categorical objections to this practice. We address key considerations concerning payment for participation in trials, including patient autonomy, risk/benefit and justice, taking account of two previous critiques of the ...

The false academy: predatory publishing in science and bioethics

This paper describes and discusses the phenomenon ‘predatory publishing’, in relation to both academic journals and books, and suggests a list of characteristics by which to identify predatory journals. It also raises the question whether traditional publishing houses have accompanied rogue publishers upon this path. It is noted that bioethics as a discipline does not stand ...

Clown’s view as respiciō: looking respectfully to and after people with dementia

Clowns seem suspect when it comes to respect. The combination of clowning and people with dementia may seem especially suspicious. In this argument, I take potential concerns about clowning in dementia care as an opportunity to explore the meaning of a respectful approach of people with dementia. Our word ‘respect’ is derived from the Latin respiciō, meaning ‘looking back’ or ...

Trust me, I’m a researcher!: The role of trust in biomedical research

In biomedical research lack of trust is seen as a great threat that can severely jeopardise the whole biomedical research enterprise. Practices, such as informed consent, and also the administrative and regulatory oversight of research in the form of research ethics committees and Institutional Review Boards, are established to ensure the protection of future research subjects and, ...

Qualifying choice: ethical reflection on the scope of prenatal screening

In the near future developments in non-invasive prenatal testing (NIPT) may soon provide couples with the opportunity to test for and diagnose a much broader range of heritable and congenital conditions than has previously been possible. Inevitably, this has prompted much ethical debate on the possible implications of NIPT for providing couples with opportunities for reproductive ...