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One Brief Life [electronic resource]: Baby L Case

During her eight weeks of life, Leaney Lavea-born prematurely and with medically insurmountable abnormalities-was dependent on machines to live. But were these machines prolonging her life, or were they merely delaying her death? This deeply moving program explores the ethical dilemma surrounding a case that began in a hospital and ended up in court. Interviews with Baby L's parents, the attending physician, the Laveas' legal counsel, and others trace the course of the battle between the parents and the hospital to assert their rights to do what they each believed was morally correct.
2005; 1998

Managing Care, Managing Death [electronic resource]

To decrease the suffering of terminally ill patients, some doctors routinely prescribe strong painkillers-medications that, in effect, actually hasten the patient's death. What distinguishes such treatment from physician-assisted suicide? This program discusses legislative initiatives designed to protect patients from "disguised euthanasia"-and addresses the volatile question of whether such laws are a threat to the professional judgment of doctors. Experts include Professor David Orenlicher, former counsel to the AMA; Dr. Zeke Emmanuel, of the NIH's Department of Clinical Bioethics; and Yale University's Dr. Sherwin Nuland, author of How We Die.
2006; 1999

Before I Die [electronic resource]: Medical Care and Personal Choices

In the drive to save lives, American medical technology prolongs the dying process for many, creating a number of end-of-life scenarios that have done much to rob death of its dignity and significance. This Fred Friendly Seminar, moderated by Harvard Law School's Arthur Miller, brings together a diverse group of panelists, including Yale professor Sherwin Nuland, author of How We Die; bioethicist Arthur Caplan, of the University of Pennsylvania; Rabbi Maurice Lamm, of Yeshiva University; and Anna Quindlen, author and Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist. Together they confront medical and cultural issues such as advance directives, palliative care, physician-assisted suicide, the need to re-spiritualize the dying process, and the overall difficulty of discussing death.
2006; 1997

Walk in Our Shoes [electronic resource]: Speaking Out About Sterilization

This emotionally charged program filmed in Australia explores the ethics of whether, and in what circumstances, women and men with severe mental or physical disabilities should ever be sterilized. All parties involved desire a better quality of life for people who it is believed are incapable of fully comprehending and then acting on the issues for themselves. But is sterilization, performed in a person's perceived best interests, a humane or an inhuman way to try to achieve it? Candid interviews with parents, caregivers, members of the judiciary, and individuals with disabilities provide numerous angles on a topic that is as compelling as it is controversial.
2006; 2003

Abortion [electronic resource]: The Choice

While abortion will no doubt polarize our society for the foreseeable future, students can learn a great deal from the circumstances, anxieties, and life goals that surround the decision to end a pregnancy. This program presents a poignant and profoundly honest look at that decision through intimate discussions with young British women. Cheryl imagines other choices she might have made if her ex-boyfriend had remained with her. Carmel shares her college and career plans, insisting that she's not ready to bring a child into the world. Hannah describes undergoing a spiritual crisis, while Margaret's sense of relief contrasts sharply with Varria's feelings of grief and shame. An abortion counselor also shares insights.
2010; 2008

Restraint-Free Environments in the Long-Term-Care Setting [electronic resource]

Eliminating restraints from the nursing home environment is not an unattainable dream! This program outlines the components of a restraint-reduction plan: developing a team approach to resident safety; assessing needs and developing interventions based on each resident's presenting problem, behavioral triggers, and available resources; and working toward desired outcomes though regular evaluation of interventions and adjustment of the resident's care plan. The best restraint alternatives? Those that take into account the resident's weaknesses while focusing on the resident's strengths. Designated for 2 contact hours of continuing nursing education.

Alzheimer's Disease for Assisted Living Facilities: Level 1 [electronic resource]

It takes a very special person to care for the Alzheimer's resident. This program-a must-see for health care workers in assisted living facilities-discusses causes of Alzheimer's disease and related dementias; symptoms and behaviors that accompany the stages of AD; strategies for coping with AD-related restlessness, agitation, and wandering; strategies for verbal and nonverbal communication with AD residents; family member guilt over placing a loved one with AD in an ALF; maintenance of a safe and engaging environment for AD residents; and ethical challenges faced by AD caregivers. Commentary by ALF professionals and family members provides additional depth...and poignancy. Extremely thorough! Meets the Florida Level I requirement for ALFs. Designated for 4 contact hours of continuin [...]

The Right to Die [electronic resource]: Terri Schiavo

Her feeding tube removed, Terri Schiavo has passed away. Medically speaking, was she in a persistent vegetative state or a locked-in state? On that question hung Terri's fate for more than a decade. Was she alive in a meaningful sense? Her husband said no; her parents said yes. This ABC News program, broadcast at the time when Terri's case was brought before the Florida legislature and Governor Jeb Bush, gives background on the acrimonious battle of life and death in which Terri was a pawn and then analyzes the medical, ethical, and legal aspects of the precedent-setting case.
2011; 2003

Genetic Engineering [electronic resource]

It's one of the greatest breakthroughs in scientific history, but genetic engineering has also brought disturbing new questions. Should we push genetic research to its absolute limit, exploiting every discovery? What are the consequences of intervening in nature's processes at their most fundamental level? Outlining the potential benefits of genetic engineering, such as the treatment or cure of hereditary diseases and the creation of better, more efficient crops, this program also explores the moral dilemma over cloning and the controversy that surrounds stem-cell research. Viewers encounter both secular and religious perspectives in those debates-which will only acquire greater urgency as the scientific frontier advances.

IVF [electronic resource]

Jokes about test-tube babies may have faded into pop-culture history, but today, even though in vitro fertilization has helped millions of people become parents, the technology still leads some cultural observers to question its methods, applications, and moral impact. IVF can be used to weed out hereditary diseases, but this ability to select embryos based on DNA testing also raises fears about choosing gender, hair color, eye color, and other aspects. Furthermore, what are the economic implications? Should IVF be affordable for everyone? This program shows how different countries have dealt with IVF-related controversies and looks at the often opposing stances which various religions take towards the procedure.

Euthanasia [electronic resource]

If death comes without suffering, under the care of a physician and requested by an individual who desires peace and closure, what are the grounds for stopping it? This program investigates the various moral, religious, and philosophical perspectives surrounding euthanasia. Highlighting both pro and con arguments in the debate as it has taken shape in the United Kingdom, the video features such prominent figures as Lord Joel Joffe, who brought to Parliament a bill supporting assisted suicide, and Baroness Jane Campbell-a disabled peer who was at one time given a 'do not resuscitate' notice and who now strongly opposes euthanasia. A short dramatic segment provides context with an illuminating, emotionally charged narrative.

India [electronic resource]: Toxic Trade-an Asbestos Nightmare

Unlike developed countries, most of which have banned asbestos products, India can't seem to get enough of the material. Disturbingly, India's chief supplier is a Western nation. Canada restricts asbestos consumption domestically, but its massive exports to India have breathed new life into the Canadian asbestos mining industry-and given vulnerable Indians the kiss of death. This program investigates, sifting through the forces of global commerce that are responsible and examining the impact on low-wage workers and poverty-stricken families. Viewers learn about the widespread use of asbestos as a cheap roofing material, steadily displacing safer options such as thatch, tiles, or steel-and how this demand for the substance meshes easily with corporate marketing tactics. India's lack o [...]

Stem Cell Ethics [electronic resource]

Destroying embryos for research has always sparked heated ethical debates about when life begins and when the appropriate cost of scientific progress hits the ceiling. In this video clip, scientists explore whether new discoveries in stem cell research will finally see the opponents and the supporters peacefully unite. In what's been dubbed the stem cell breakthrough of the decade, Japanese scientists have discovered a new type of stem cell that could eliminate the need for using human embryos.

Miracle Cures [electronic resource]: SuperDoctors

This episode reports on the pioneering British trials of stem cells as a treatment for heart attacks and heart disease at the London Chest Hospital. We follow a patient willing to offer himself as a guinea pig in a double-blind placebo trial. This type of trial is the only way science will know whether or not stem cells work. We also see a family who sought treatment for their brain-damaged son, but their son lost his life in their desperate bid to obtain stem cell treatments in unregulated clinics around the world. The program looks at the plight of patients willing to try the latest experimental stem cell treatment - and questions how medicine can best be advanced by treating such patients.

An Imperfect Cure [electronic resource]: Great Ormond Street

The patients of the renal unit at Great Ormond Street Hospital are living with conditions that cannot be completely cured. In this film, Drs. Lesley Rees, Rukshana Shroff, and Sarah Ledermann face complex decisions in a never-ending cycle of treatment: 4-month-old Alisha was born with kidney failure, and the staff must keep her alive until she grows big enough to receive a kidney transplant; 14-year-old Imaan's kidneys are slowly poisoning her, and doctors want to remove them, but she refuses to have the operation; Bethany was born with mental and physical disabilities, including poorly functioning kidneys, and her father is keen to donate his kidney, but the staff must decide whether she is likely to survive a transplant.

Caught in the Machine [electronic resource]: Great Ormond Street

In this film, Drs. Christine Pierce and Andy Petros face decisions about very difficult cases: 7-year-old Ellis has been in a coma for five weeks with an unknown illness, and doctors must keep him alive and solve the mystery of his condition; 8-month-old Uzoma has been in the hospital since she was born, and the team must assess if she will ever be well enough to go home; the parents of 8-month-old Deanne have been told that she is unlikely to survive, but her mother has asked the hospital to review her case; a 1-day-old baby has been born without a windpipe, and the team must decide whether to try experimental surgery.

Pushing the Boundaries [electronic resource]: Great Ormond Street

At the Great Ormond Street Hospital, Drs. Martin Elliott and Victor Tsang perform advanced surgery not carried out elsewhere in the U.K. This film follows the stories of four children as the doctors attempt to save their lives: the parents of 8-month-old Aicha, who is given only a few months to live, convince the team to reconsider its decision to avoid further treatment; the parents of 8-month-old Natalie are offered surgery that might save their daughter's life, but the procedure has never been tried before; 9-year-old Bryan has had several heart operations, and a high-risk heart transplant is all that's left for him; and the parents of 2-day-old Blessing must decide whether to agree to a perilous operation on their daughter.

Building the Perfect Bug [electronic resource]: Virology, Rogue Science, and Bioterrorism

Why did Dutch virologist Ron Fouchier and his team of researchers purposely engineer a lethal, airborne bird flu virus? That's the first of many questions raised in this timely, eye-opening investigation. Why did Fouchier, in an uncanny parallel with American scientists who conducted similar experiments, decide to publish his findings and openly share his working methods? Can the deadly microbes he produced be contained securely, or are they vulnerable to bioterrorists? Interviewed in the film, Fouchier and a respected American virologist, Dr. Vincent Racaniello of Columbia University, defend the controversial research while Pulitzer Prize-winning science writer Laurie Garret and other experts highlight the tremendous risks it poses.

Whatever It Takes [electronic resource]: A Child Against All Odds

Denise, 43, is a midwife who has delivered hundreds of babies for other people but is unable to have a child of her own. She and her husband are putting their trust in an embryo-screening test that could help her avoid another miscarriage. This episode follows them through the treatment - and the critical decision they are suddenly faced with. Yasmina and Aldwin have been receiving IVF treatment for six years. They are so keen to start a family that they are prepared to take medication that is unproven. The couple add to their existing £40,000 IVF bill and take a gamble on the new treatment. An emotional roller coaster ensues.

Minds on the Edge [electronic resource]: Facing Mental Illness

America's frenzied debate over government health insurance has eclipsed another, no less challenging, national health care crisis-the plight of people with serious mental illnesses like schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. This Fred Friendly Seminar sheds light on barriers to treatment, ethical and legal dilemmas, and fragmented social policies that are creating a nightmare for families, filling America's jails, and wasting scarce resources. Led by veteran broadcast journalist Frank Sesno, the program features hypothetical scenarios that challenge prominent mental health professionals, policymakers, and legal luminaries to confront the situations and stigma facing Americans with mental illness. Panelists include U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, Nobel-winning neuroscientist E [...]