Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Two examples of medical ethics

The Global Post reports that according to a two-year study by the Institute of Medicine and the George Soros-funded Open Society Foundations, medical professionals helped design, enable and participated in “torture and cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment” of detainees at prisons run by the Pentagon and the CIA. ”It’s clear that in the name of national security, the military trumped (the Hippocratic Oath), and physicians were transformed into agents of the military and performed acts that were contrary to medical ethics and practice,” said study co-author Gerald Thomson, professor of medicine emeritus at Columbia University. The Hippocratic Oath is a committment made by medical personnel to practice their profession in an honest and ethical manner.
Dr. Paul Wheeler, who heads a unit at John Hopkins that Joint investigative reports last week from the Center for Public Integrity and ABC News found the program at John Hopkins “helped coal companies thwart efforts by ailing mine workers to receive disability benefits.” According to the reports, Dr Wheeler “found not a single case of severe black lung in the more than 1,500 cases decided since 2000 in which he offered an opinion.” The investigations also found that other experienced X-ray readers disagreed with some of Wheeler’s analyses. In some cases, miners who could not obtain benefits due to Wheeler’s conclusions and later died were positively diagnosed by other medical personnel based on autopsy results. The medical school and hospital system at Johns Hopkins University said in a statement, “We take very seriously the questions raised” in the reports. It says it will suspend and review its black lung program.
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