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Bioethics

The Presidential Commission and Synthetic Biology

Michael Rugnetta | Posted 05.25.2011 | Technology
Michael Rugnetta

The promise of the field of synbio as a whole is that scientists will be able to employ this type of genome synthesis to create customized life forms for a wide array of purposes. The peril is exactly the same as the promise.

New Milestone in Genetic Testing

Michael Rugnetta | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Michael Rugnetta

Here is my latest article on the first study published by a Direct-to-Consumer Genetic Testing company: Defining the Boundaries of Genetic Testing N...

Are We Ready for Coed Hospital Rooms?

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

Long emergency room stays are one of the most unpleasant and potentially dangerous aspects of healthcare delivery in most western nations. In recent ...

Reproductive Fraud? Sham Pregnancy Centers Face Pushback

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

It's increasingly difficult to figure out which of the numerous organizations claiming to offer "reproductive health services" actually provide termination referrals and which are merely sham clinics established by right-wing religious activists.

Sexism and the Price of Eggs

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 11.17.2011 | Healthy Living
Jacob M. Appel

The most legitimate concern raised by supporters of caps on payments to egg "donors" is that charging fair value might price some would-be parents out of the marketplace.

Are Breasts a Right or a Privilege?

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

It shouldn't matter whether breast enhancement for GID patients is a "core" medical necessity. What ought to matter is that a human being is suffering and the medical establishment has the technology and resources to help.

After St. Joseph's: Are Women Still Safe in Catholic Hospitals?

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

Thomas J. Olmsted, the Catholic bishop of Phoenix, Arizona, has condemned and excommunicated a highly regarded nun who approved an abortion necessary to save a pregnant woman's life.

Scavenging for Organs: Why the Donor Famine Justifies A Radical Harvest

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

18 Americans die every day while waiting for an organ transplant, yet the American political establishment has been unwilling to champion non-traditional methods of expanding the organ supply.

Fighting Science in the Name of God

Brad Hirschfield | Posted 05.25.2011 | Religion
Brad Hirschfield

It's quite sad to see people marshaling their faith in order to provide window dressing for a set of fears and hostilities which are about something altogether separate from faith.

Should Children Have A Right to Die?

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

Pediatric aid-in-dying is coming out of the medical closet. In an era of parental rights and child welfare, maybe we are finally ready to grant suffering minors the right to die.

NASA's Wrong Stuff

Aysha Akhtar, M.D., M.P.H. | Posted 05.25.2011 | Green
Aysha Akhtar, M.D., M.P.H.

NASA's radiation experiments on monkeys have cost thousands of animals their lives and have provided hardly any useful information about the effects of space radiation on humans.

Pope vs. Doctors: How New Vatican Orthodoxy Undermines Medical Ethics and Imperils Your Health

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

By challenging this longstanding system of benign neglect, bishops and zealots may believe they will achieve ideological purity. What they are actually doing is jeopardizing Catholic hospitals and public health.

Medical Kidnapping: Rogue Obstetricians vs. Pregnant Women

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 11.17.2011 | Healthy Living
Jacob M. Appel

The treatment of a pregnant Tallahassee mother, Samantha Burton, by her obstetrician may well rank among the most egregious abuses perpetrated against a patient by her caregiver since the triumph of the patients' rights movement.

Thoughts on Bone Marrow Selling

Michael Rugnetta | Posted 05.25.2011 | Technology
Michael Rugnetta

Is selling bone marrow sensible or exploitative? A recent panel at the Cato Institute debated the issue.

Doubling Down on Baby M: New Jersey's Ongoing Resistance to Surrogacy

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

That a woman consented to use her body as a surrogate was irrelevant, because there are some acts to which nobody is permitted to consent. As well-meaning as this approach might have been, its underpinnings are inescapably sexist.

Beyond Guantanamo: Torture Thrives in Connecticut

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

In the case of Coleman v. Lantz, Connecticut has argued for the right to force feed a hunger-striking inmate in an excruciatingly painful manner.

Making Access to Flu Vaccine Happen

Dr. Orin Levine | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Dr. Orin Levine

The long-term answer to sustainable vaccine access for developing countries is structuring pricing to make doses affordable to those countries.

The Scientists' Bark

G.A. Bradshaw | Posted 05.25.2011 | Green
G.A. Bradshaw

The author of Elephants on the Edge: What Animals Teach Us About Humanity examines new findings from primatology and neurobiology.

Embracing Teenage Sexuality: Let's Rethink the Age of Consent

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

Our draconian consent laws are largely the product of a conservative political culture that has transformed the fight against child molestation into a full-blown war on teenage sexuality.

Health "Insurance": A Criminal Enterprise

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

I have little doubt that the day will soon arrive when the CEOs of health "insurers" are dragged before Congress to face the same sort of interrogation to which the Waxman Hearings subjected Big Tobacco in the 1990s.

The Rom Houben Tragedy And The Case For Active Euthanasia

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

If one believes that the prevention of suffering may sometimes justify the withdrawal or withholding of care, then the very fact that Houben was conscious for twenty-three years might call more convincingly for such action.

Beyond Fluoride: Pharmaceuticals, Drinking Water and the Public Health

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

If we are willing to ingest fluoride to prevent tooth decay, surely we can tolerate a trace of lithium to prevent suicides.

Women or Babies: When Values Conflict

Valerie Tarico | Posted 05.25.2011 | Impact
Valerie Tarico

The most controversial check I write each year is the one that goes to a small nonprofit called Project Prevention.

Dr. Coburn's Peculiar Privilege

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

Senator Coburn claims physician-patient privilege to avoid testifying against Ensign. But this is not a "Get out of Jail Free" card for physicians who acquire knowledge outside of their work as doctors.

"Mercy Killing": When Love & Law Conflict

Jacob M. Appel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jacob M. Appel

The blame in two murder cases rests squarely with a society that forces devoted husbands and wives to choose between the welfare of their spouses and the letter of the law.