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Intro to Bioethics PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/e/e9/Thumb_Daniel_Callahan.jpg/220px-Thumb_Daniel_Callahan.jpg. Intro to Bioethics. Emerged in 50’s-60’s Modern detail due to new technology advances (e.g. the pill, abortion, dialysis, transplants)

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Intro to Bioethics

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http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/e/e9/Thumb_Daniel_Callahan.jpg/220px-Thumb_Daniel_Callahan.jpg


Intro to Bioethics

  • Emerged in 50’s-60’s

  • Modern detail due to new technology advances (e.g. the pill, abortion, dialysis, transplants)

    • At same time as awareness of dangers of “pure progress” (e.g. Silent Spring)

    • Also civil rights

    • Time of increased individualism and choices

    • Affirmative right to health (not just absence of disease)

    • Reframing of who has rights

  • But still all about the same old questions

    • Life and death

    • Pain and suffering

    • Duty to others


Other Historical Context

  • Eugenics

    • Eugenics movement big in US

      • Anti-miscegenation laws

      • Margaret Sanger

      • Forced sterilizations of the “unfit”

    • Also big with Nazis…

  • Experiments on prisoners and disabled

  • Colonialism


Other Historical Context: Tuskegee Experiment

Ran from 1932-1972

~400 poor, rural African-American men with syphilis (200 w/o)

Offered free medical care

Not told about or treated for syphilis

Penicillin available in 1940, standard by 1947

Wanted to see progress of disease

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tuskegee_syphilis_experiment


The field…

Ethics meets life sciences (medicine)

An academic field of its own

Provides cultural perspective

Affects law, policy, media, culture, other disciplines

Struggles to be taken seriously…. But is contributing


Bioethics gets at….

  • Tension between individual and private

    • Large scale policy/legislation

  • Tries to answer questions about what we should do

    • Applied at different levels


Historically

  • Idea that

    • science/medicine = fact/ truth/ solid/ authoritative

    • ethics = soft/ relativistic/ personal/ idiosyncratic

    • And that these are separate

  • Then a good medical decision = a good moral decision

  • Goal of bioethics is to blur that line

    • Develop tools/methods to deal with problems

    • Different from “medical ethics”


Questions

  • How can I be moral and act morally to others?

  • What do I base this on?

    • Virtue v. duty?

    • Principles?

    • Rights? (deontology)

    • Consequences (utilitarianism)

    • Whose freedom/choice gets prioritized

    • Top-down v. bottom-up

Feminist Bioethics


http://www.upne.com/author_mugs/steinbergdavid_mug.jpg


A little more on Bioethics

  • Hard to define  but about values and promoting them

    • About right and wrong

  • Says that fact that we don’t know how to deal with conflict is evidence that Bioethics is not as solid as science

  • But decisions have to be made and we need to know how to deal with them

  • About a common morality


Different Philosophies

Utilitarianism – consequences

Deontologism – logically derived rules from principles

Principalism – morality based on autonomy, nonmaleficence, beneficence, and justice


http://www.lifesitenews.com/images/sized/images/news/peter-singer-400x276.jpg


Animals?

  • Non-human animal ethics is based on assertion that animals feel pain and are conscious

    • General agreement (science + experience)

  • Therefore a general assumption that procedures that hurt people also hurt animals


Context and History

  • Lots of animals used in experimental work

    • >22 million/year as of 1986

    • Mice, rats, cats, dogs, rabbits, primates, pigs….

  • Toxicity testing

    • Until late 80’s, LD50 was standard for everything

    • Also Draize eye test  consumer backlash

  • Military

    • Relatively undocumented (and unregulated)

    • Monkey radiation

  • Psych research

    • Big exposés a Penn about monkey studies

  • Dissection

    • Out of favor, more alternatives


Guidelines

Most countries have some protection

CIOMS

Most institutions have committees/codes


In defense of….

  • Leads to breakthroughs

  • Advances knowledge and disease cures

  • Mostly harmless studies

  • Lots for vet purposes

  • Justifications:

    • Benefit to humans > harm to animals

    • Knowledge > harm


So….

If we believe (as we do now) that this doesn’t justify harm to non-consenting adults, we have to establish a different moral status of humans and non-human animals.


Some positions….

  • Biblical

    • We have domain (but we are also the shepherds)

  • Animals don’t have rights

    • Are not moral (rational) agents capable of autonomous action

    • Therefore we only have moral obligation to those who can reciprocate

  • Contract based on species membership


Utilitarianism Applied

  • Benefit to human life span is worth it

    • Bypass graft example

  • Genuine utilitarianism looks at all pain

    • Need a human-centric flavor

  • Inconsistent to not use for lab work but to use for food?


The range of anti’s

  • Abolitionists

    • Ends don’t justify means

    • Pain/death of an innocent is wrong

    • Hard for many to be absolute if outcome is important enough

  • Reformers

    • Ok if we change practices and benefit good enough

    • Promote alternate methods

    • The 3 R’s

      • Reduction

      • Refinement

      • Replacement


Moral Status

  • We don’t draw ethical boundary at species

  • Not just about ability

  • Speciesism analogous to racism

    • Intelligence argument is a slippery slope

  • Not claiming all interests are equal, but all should be considered

  • Need to examine assumption that restricting animal research impedes science


CIOMS


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