Another week, another conference.
The annual meeting of the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities started yesterday in Washington DC (btw, student membership is only $30). This is another of those excellent meetings that I wish I could attend, but unfortunately will have to miss this year.
If you are new to Twitter-facilitated conference attendance, see my first post “Distance Learning…” for some tips. So far, these folks appear to be leading the pack:
Summary of what I’ve been able to garner from today’s sessions. Of course, ethicists will be ethicists and many of the questions below don’t have answers:
- Link to Arabic/English Islamic Bioethics Database hosted by Georgetown University (via zachsholem)
- Ethics Consults–
- There is no standard certification system for clinical ethicists. Apparently, coming down the pipeline is a process involving portfolios and an oral exam (ack!). (via achatburn)
- Should Ethics consultants be bound by a code of ethics? (via achatburn). Ehhmmm…
- Should Ethics consultants recuse themselves if they are also the Palliative consultant? And does the answer change if the role of the Ethics consult is determinant vs advisory vs facilitative/educational only? (via achatburn) Interesting potential conflict of interest, has crossed my mind but haven’t given it enough thought yet.
- Bioethics of drug/equipment shortages. Methotrexate and Doxil discussed –
- Whose interests prevail in times of shortage (patient, hospital system, manufacturers, government, etc), and how do our responsibilities to existing patients differ from those to new patients? (via leahJHU and bermaninstitute)
- Lay persons in the audience are apparently surprised that hospitals don’t share in time of drug shortage. (via leahJHU). Ehm. Really?
- Hospitals don’t like to share their contingency plans (via bermaninstitute)
- Ethics of foster care in the US (shocking stuff)
- Zoloth: recommended case load for social workers is 7 foster kids per worker. Guess what the typical load really is? Approximately 150 per SW! (via leahJHU). Painful.
- Suggestion by the speaker that the plight of foster children is relatively ignored, compared to other causes taken up by bioethics. (via leahJHU and bermaninstitute)
- Heartwrenching stats (via bermaninstitute)
- The US – 500,000 kids in foster care, growing 5%/year
- The state of Illinois – 17,000 kids in foster care, 20 die every year.
- Foster Care = $10,000,000,000 per year industry
- Ethics and Social Media
- Common wisdom is for physicians to separate personal and professional identities. Speaker suggests this may not be necessary. Perhaps we would stand to gain from a synergy of our online personal and professional personae? It may, in fact, be impossible to separate the two anyway. (via bermaninstitute, leahJHU, and drdanoconnor)
- Speakers on loss of context through the cloud. Nuance, finer points are lost once ideas, isolated quotes float into the WWW. (via bermaninstitute)
- “Life in the cloud is immortal and omnipresent” (via klynharrison)
- Gender and sexual reassignment surgery – There was a flurry of posts on the topic, unfortunately I was unable to form a coherent narrative…
- Black Swan – plenary session. Limited tweets. One can only imagine what this was about in the context of the practice of medicine. For more on the Black Swan theory, see this exerpt by author, philosopher, economist Nassim Nicholas Taleb.
- Ethics of Chimpanzee Research (via all authors listed above)-
- Can chimps consent? (I hope not, that would have serious implications for how I assess decisional capacity)
- It is not just a question of scientific necessity but also moral justification.
- Referencing the IOM report and its adoption by NIH and even by private industry (quietly). The report, however, leaves open the question of other non-human primates.
- End of Life
That’s all for today. Enjoying the tweets, hope these folks (and more?) keep it up!