Hunger and The Global Food Crisis
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Hunger and The Global Food Crisis

Organizations and scholars frame the current food crisis as a global phenomenon due to a confluence of events and circumstances like droughts, the pandemic, and the war in Ukraine. As Samantha Power noted this week, “a decade of progress” has been “obliterated”. The number of people with unmet food needs is steeply increasing after a…

“Somewhere in the constitution”: Reproductive Freedom
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“Somewhere in the constitution”: Reproductive Freedom

Reactions to Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health are wide ranging, and many seem to reflect emotion and use charged language. I do not mean to downplay the tossing out of an established constitutional right, but a cooling off period may allow for more reasoned discussion. While in the past courts disagreed about where in the…

Anti-Resilience: What Happened to Normal?
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Anti-Resilience: What Happened to Normal?

Diagnosis is a tricky word. Doctors diagnose some scientific truths: for example, a finding of a tumor and the accompanying pathology report describing cellular activity and genetic information, etc. Diagnosis is also the term used for many things for which science does not provide a distinct test – diagnosis depends in those cases on a…

The Social Determinants of Health: Finding Causation in a Sea of Correlation
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The Social Determinants of Health: Finding Causation in a Sea of Correlation

The social determinants of health by Marmot and Wilkinson are a list of social circumstances that impede or positively influence good health. Pointing out barriers to achieving health, the social determinants set the backdrop for justice-based bioethics. Access to good jobs in which one has agency or discretion and a living wage and access to…

Let the Chips Fall: Bioethics Should Support Civil Justice

Let the Chips Fall: Bioethics Should Support Civil Justice

Bioethics concerns justice, fairness, and the social determinants of health. One example of an area in which bioethics can contribute to promoting justice is in advocating for access to civil justice. While few people (and a decreasing number of people) wronged in a tort actually file a lawsuit, the ability to do so is a…

A Supply Chain of Trust
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A Supply Chain of Trust

One strategy for improving public trust in science, the COVID-19 vaccine and possibly future COVID-19 vaccines or vaccines for emerging virus should be improving trustworthiness at all levels. The way bioethics and public health approach public trust often leaves out the most crucial element: improving trustworthiness and maintaining trustworthy institutions. Doctors and other healthcare professionals…

Bound by the Rules: The Pitfalls of Resource Allocation Ethics
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Bound by the Rules: The Pitfalls of Resource Allocation Ethics

When ethics becomes too rules-based the thinking and making sense of complex situations can be obscured by techniques that declare some ethical decisions final and powered by precedent or guidelines. A stronger practicum that includes ethical tools designed to help people wrestle with complex dilemmas using rationality, logic, and compassion may lead to better ethical…

Brain Activity & Thoughts: Should Neuro-Rights Look Beyond the Individual?
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Brain Activity & Thoughts: Should Neuro-Rights Look Beyond the Individual?

Neuro-rights may protect people from certain harms due to neurotech advances. Neurotech has potential to improve medical treatments and revolutionize care, but there are foreseeable risks. Marcello Ienca defines neuro-rights “as the ethical, legal, social, or natural principles of freedom or entitlement related to a person’s cerebral and mental domain; that is, the fundamental normative…

Authenticity in Bioethics: Saying It in Your Own Words and Phrases
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Authenticity in Bioethics: Saying It in Your Own Words and Phrases

In the bioethics realm, there are a pre-set language, basket of concerns, and principles to sort through ethical dilemmas. But generally, people are more authentic when they express themselves in their own terms. This post explores whether the chosen language is setting artificial parameters in bioethics. The four principles and the most noted concerns like…

Free Exercise and Vaccine Mandates: The Least Restrictive Means
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Free Exercise and Vaccine Mandates: The Least Restrictive Means

Vaccine mandates without religious exemptions (or as enforceable against those claiming free exercise) are in uncertain legal terrain. Nineteen states mandate vaccines for healthcare workers, but vary as to religious exemptions. The medical value of mandates with and without exemptions depends on the number of people who successfully claim exemptions or stall in becoming vaccinated…