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Medical Ethics
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Let Me Die [electronic resource]

Dying is something we generally try to avoid thinking about. But when living comes to mean wasting away, losing all autonomy, seeing one's very identity eroded, death may be a welcome deliverance. What options does society permit? Living wills, heroic medical intervention, passive euthanasia - are these choices enough for someone in severe pain whose death is imminent? Each person has an intimate relationship with life. Why isn't it the same with death? Shouldn't we be allowed a freely chosen, dignified end when the time is right? Let Me Die explores the answers to these questions and more as critically ill people courageously speak about their quality of life and their wish to die with dignity. This documentary provides interviews with doctors who advocate a more humane, less contro [...]

India [electronic resource]: Two Hearts-a Struggle to Save Conjoined Twins

In many parts of India, particularly its most poverty-stricken corners, life for girls can be difficult indeed. So what hope was there for Stuti and Aradhana-conjoined newborn sisters with two tiny hearts beating in a shared sac, their bodies sharing a single liver? As the staff at Padhar Hospital in Madhya Pradesh mounted a nationwide fundraising campaign for surgery, hospital chief Dr Rajiv Choudhrie called on a friend practicing at The Children's Hospital at Westmead in Sydney. Dr. Gordon Thomas in turn reached out to eminent pediatric surgeon Albert Shun and anesthetist David Baines, who joined what would be an operating team of 24 doctors and 40 nurses. This program was produced with intimate access to the extraordinary surgical team and the marathon effort to separate Stuti and [...]

HIV and AIDS [electronic resource]

Explores recent developments in the study of HIV and AIDS, the future global impact of the current infection levels, and the ethical issues surrounding current research and treatments. Explains how studying individuals with natural resistance to HIV has led to insights into the infection process and may produce new treatments or a vaccine.

The Ethics of Cloning [electronic resource]

The technology of cloning has raised a host of moral, ethical, and religious questions, and this program examines many of them. The "dangers" of cloning, from shrinking gene pools, to the development of a "super race," to fears that cloned DNA could introduce genetic flaws into the population, are examined. A theologian discusses how cloning changes our notion of soul. Harold Shapiro, chairman of the National Bioethics Advisory Commission, comments on the recent ban on the cloning of humans, and a cloning expert discusses government regulation versus the freedom of scientific inquiry. A panel discussion in which experts debate ethical issues concludes the program.
2008; 1997

Playing God [electronic resource]: Human Cloning

Will human cloning provide a panacea for ailments and diseases or usher in a nightmarish world of eugenics and designer people? This program presents an in-depth exploration of the ethical concerns regarding human cloning, a technology that has already prompted heated debate over its potential uses and abuses. A variety of perspectives are canvassed from the theological, legal, and scientific fields, including interviews with Dr. Ian Wilmut, the first scientist to successfully clone a mammal-Dolly, a sheep.
2005; 2000

Designer Babies [electronic resource]: Dangers of Corporate Genetics

Imagine a future in which physical strength and assertiveness are the top-selling items on "baby menus." This program explores that possibility and other frightening implications of market-driven genetic engineering. Showing how the government-funded Human Genome Project has become highly lucrative for pharmaceutical companies, the video examines cases of exploitative gene harvesting in Iceland and Peru, where isolated ethnic populations contain commercially valuable DNA. Interviews with prominent scientists and activists highlight the dangers of patenting genomic data and an absence of public discourse about artificial gene selection.

Fetal Fix [electronic resource]: Stem Cell Research and Moral Conflict

In the expanding world of biotechnology, cells taken from aborted fetuses are seen as a promising resource for developing a variety of medical cures-although their use has sparked intense controversy. This program examines stem cell and fetal tissue research programs in the United States, Japan, and China and highlights the ethical concerns that surround these projects. Explaining why stem cells cultivated from embryonic or fetal tissue are useful for transplant work and for developing treatments for Parkinson's disease, spinal cord injuries, and other medical problems, the program explores a new dimension in the battle over the sanctity-and value-of human life.
2006; 2005

Who's Afraid of Designer Babies? [electronic resource]: The Ethics of Genetic Screening

PGD, or pre-implantation genetic diagnosis, allows doctors and parents to screen brand-new embryos for genetic diseases. This program illustrates the PGD process and what it implies-from lifesaving medical solutions to what many see as the Nazi-esque disposal of life. The experiences of couples considering or undergoing PGD are featured-including the story of Leanne and Stephen, who ignited controversy in Australia by screening for a son who could donate blood to his ailing older brother. Interviews with bioethics experts, including Oxford professor Julian Savulescu and Dr. Francis Fukuyama of Johns Hopkins University, elucidate both sides of the debate.
2006; 2004

Understanding the Use of Growth Hormone [electronic resource]

A must-see for parents and doctors as well as for medical students, this program comes to grips with the controversial topic of human growth hormone therapy. Five case studies shed light on a variety of related topics, including the role of the pituitary gland and genes in growth, diagnostics such as bone age X-rays and growth hormone provocative testing, treatment modalities and side effects, and applications of growth hormone to cases of renal failure and HIV infection. The importance of early detection of growth problems at routine well-baby checkups and periodic follow-up examinations of school-age children is emphasized.
2006; 2002

The Drugging of Our Children [electronic resource]: Inside the ADHD Controversy

Some doctors are wary of prescribing medication for ADD or ADHD, especially when treating young patients-but the majority rely on psychotropic drugs. This program challenges the status quo, supported by a staggering amount of testimony and documentation. Incorporating detailed interviews with psychiatrists, neurologists, and education experts-as well as parents and kids who have suffered because of rigid prescription practices-the program analyzes links between school procedures, the medical establishment, and Big Pharma. Footage from the 1998 Consensus Development Conference on ADD/ADHD raises disturbing questions about how the disorders are diagnosed.
2007; 2005

The NewsHour [electronic resource]: Human Biology

Genetic and neurological research has led to increasingly sophisticated medical capabilities-resulting in a growing number of moral and ethical quandaries. This cluster of NewsHour segments surveys recent milestones in biology-many of which have produced as much controversy as insight. Reporting on the newly-identified anti-aging gene SIR2 and the cross-species implantation of stem cells, the program also inquires into artificial limb technology, the dynamics of the teenage brain, and the storage of environmental toxins in the human body. A visit to the American Bible Belt, including Kentucky's Creationist Museum, highlights the ongoing debate over human origins. Original
2007; 2005

Death of a Wonder Drug [electronic resource]: Vioxx Recall

On September 30, 2004, pharmaceutical giant Merck voluntarily withdrew its popular painkiller Vioxx after it was linked to increased risks of heart attack and stroke. Was Merck's move driven by genuine concern for patients? Or, given findings from earlier studies, was the recall a self-protective move that came too late? This CNBC investigation takes viewers through the process by which one of Big Pharma's most widely prescribed products was tested, approved, and marketed-at the expense, many say, of thousands of consumers. Several medical experts provide commentary, in addition to FDA whistle-blower David Graham, who has cited numerous faults in the government's handling of Vioxx testing.
2008; 2004

Cultural Diversity in Health Care [electronic resource]

Reflecting the diverse nature of today's society, a health care worker must adapt his or her practices to the cultural, ethnic, and religious needs of patients. In fact, the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Health Care Organizations states that all industry workers must familiarize themselves with the significance of cultural differences. This program provides nurses and other health professionals with practical and effective methods of recognizing, respecting, and meeting cultural needs. Topics include conducting an initial cultural assessment, addressing food- and language-related challenges, understanding religious customs, and becoming a client advocate. Includes detailed conversations with members of specific cultural groups, including Haitian, Peruvian, Indian, Bangladeshi, [...]

Joint Reaction [electronic resource]: Hip Replacement Technology Gone Awry

Ron was an active 76-year-old when he underwent articular surface replacement, or ASR, for one of his hips. Soon after his surgery a lump the size of a grapefruit developed on the side of his leg. Five operations later, he can barely walk. Another case study features Catherine, who had ASR in her early 40s and now suffers from toxic levels of cobalt in her system. Ron and Catherine are among the multitude of patients worldwide facing a painful, uncertain future due to the chromium and cobalt components of ASR. Produced in Australia, this program overviews how the metal-to-metal technology was intended to work and asks much-needed questions about its trial phase-which appears to have been wholly inadequate.

Adults [electronic resource]: Age-Specific Care

Medical care focused on adults must take into account a wide variety of cultural, physiological, and administrative challenges. The good news is that a patient who has matured and become self-reliant is now ready to act as a partner in his or her own health care decisions. This program explores the requirements of adult care, from the college-level years to retirement and the final phases of life. Reminding viewers that the focus now shifts away from growth and into long-term health maintenance, the video offers guidance on the following topics: heart disease, cancer, maternity, childbirth, parenting, child care, aging, diminishing strength and agility, elder and institutional care, Alzheimer's and dementia, and the need to retain and maximize quality of life. The dilemma of the "san [...]

Commitment [electronic resource]: Patients, Professionalism, and Boundaries-Ethical Issues in Nursing

Highlighting the second provision of the American Nurses Association Code of Ethics, this program focuses on aspects of nursing pertaining to commitment. It emphasizes the role of the nurse as patient advocate. Through engaging on-screen scenarios and expert interviews, the video addresses the primacy of patient interests and the nurse's role as a moral agent who will invariably make the patient's welfare an overriding priority. Viewers also receive a thorough grounding in avoiding conflicts of interest, respecting professional boundaries, and taking the proper actions or channels when the wishes of the patient clash with others. Explores the importance of collaboration in the workplace while maintaining personal commitment and a productive, professional focus.

Introduction [electronic resource]: Concepts, Values, and Decision Making-Ethical Issues in Nursing

Using expert interviews and illustrative scenarios, this program provides a solid introduction to the fundamental ethical terms and concepts that nursing trainees need to know. It clearly defines justice, fidelity, autonomy, moral distress, and other touchstones of ethical practice. The video also explores the vital role that personal values play in ethical situations, how to best understand and address value conflicts, the importance of a nurse's self-regard, and key steps to sound, ethical decision-making. Viewers learn about the JCAHO mandate that health care institutions address ethical issues related to patient care. Utilizes the ethical codes of the American Nurses Association, the Canadian Nurses Association, and the International Council of Nurses.

Nurses at Risk [electronic resource]

The demands of nursing can affect an individual physically, mentally, and emotionally. This program is designed to teach nursing staff members how to cope with the unique demands of their duties, examining specific stressors and highlighting strategies nurses can use to decrease the possibility of stress-related disorders. Identifying negative coping mechanisms commonly used by nursing personnel, the video discusses their health impact and describes positive stress-management techniques. Viewers learn to recognize characteristics commonly associated with a co-dependent personality and how those characteristics could manifest in a co-dependent nurse. Safety and security issues and their corresponding protective measures are also explored.

Protection [electronic resource]: Privacy, Safety, and Standards-Ethical Issues in Nursing

Exploring the third provision in the American Nurses Association Code of Ethics, this program looks at confidentiality standards mandated under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) as well as the role of ethics in medical research. The video also addresses the proper methods for reporting unethical, illegal, or impaired practices. With help from illustrative scenarios and expert interviews, viewers learn about the importance of patient privacy and confidentiality and various ways that nurses can successfully advocate for their patients, including those who might participate in research. Also covered: review mechanisms and the role of an ethics committee.

Respect [electronic resource]: Dignity, Autonomy, and Relationships-Ethical Issues in Nursing

Focusing on the first provision of the American Nurses Association Code of Ethics, this program presents short scenarios and commentary from health care professionals to illustrate key knowledge points. Viewers are familiarized with the central concept of respect. The video explores the importance of establishing positive relationships with patients, offering practical ways that nurses can show respect and emphasize human dignity in their work. Other vital concepts include factors of diversity, a patient's right to self-determination, and end-of-life issues. The program clearly describes the nurse's role in supporting patient autonomy, informed consent, and the practice of extending respect beyond patients to one's colleagues as well.