BackgroundAs a number of commentators have noted, SARS exposed the vulnerabilities of our health care systems and governance structures. Health care professionals and hospital systems that bore the brunt of the SARS outbreak continue to struggle with the aftermath of the crisis. Indeed, HCPs – both in clinical care and in public health – were severely tested by SARS. Unprecedented demands were placed on their skills and expertise, and their personal commitment to their profession was severely tried. Many were exposed (...) to serious risk of morbidity and mortality, as evidenced by the World Health Organization figures showing that approximately 30% of reported cases were among HCPs, some of whom died from the infection. Despite this challenge, professional codes of ethics are silent on the issue of duty to care during communicable disease outbreaks, thus providing no guidance on what is expected of HCPs or how they ought to approach their duty to care in the face of risk.DiscussionIn the aftermath of SARS and with the spectre of a pandemic avian influenza, it is imperative that we consider the obligations of HCPs for patients with severe infectious diseases, particularly diseases that pose risks to those providing care. It is of pressing importance that organizations representing HCPs give clear indication of what standard of care is expected of their members in the event of a pandemic. In this paper, we address the issue of special obligations of HCPs during an infectious disease outbreak. We argue that there is a pressing need to clarify the rights and responsibilities of HCPs in the current context of pandemic flu preparedness, and that these rights and responsibilities ought to be codified in professional codes of ethics. Finally, we present a brief historical accounting of the treatment of the duty to care in professional health care codes of ethics.SummaryAn honest and critical examination of the role of HCPs during communicable disease outbreaks is needed in order to provide guidelines regarding professional rights and responsibilities, as well as ethical duties and obligations. With this paper, we hope to open the social dialogue and advance the public debate on this increasingly urgent issue. (shrink)
Background As a number of commentators have noted, SARS exposed the vulnerabilities of our health care systems and governance structures. Health care professionals (HCPs) and hospital systems that bore the brunt of the SARS outbreak continue to struggle with the aftermath of the crisis. Indeed, HCPs – both in clinical care and in public health – were severely tested by SARS. Unprecedented demands were placed on their skills and expertise, and their personal commitment to their profession was severely tried. Many (...) were exposed to serious risk of morbidity and mortality, as evidenced by the World Health Organization figures showing that approximately 30% of reported cases were among HCPs, some of whom died from the infection. Despite this challenge, professional codes of ethics are silent on the issue of duty to care during communicable disease outbreaks, thus providing no guidance on what is expected of HCPs or how they ought to approach their duty to care in the face of risk. Discussion In the aftermath of SARS and with the spectre of a pandemic avian influenza, it is imperative that we (re)consider the obligations of HCPs for patients with severe infectious diseases, particularly diseases that pose risks to those providing care. It is of pressing importance that organizations representing HCPs give clear indication of what standard of care is expected of their members in the event of a pandemic. In this paper, we address the issue of special obligations of HCPs during an infectious disease outbreak. We argue that there is a pressing need to clarify the rights and responsibilities of HCPs in the current context of pandemic flu preparedness, and that these rights and responsibilities ought to be codified in professional codes of ethics. Finally, we present a brief historical accounting of the treatment of the duty to care in professional health care codes of ethics. Summary An honest and critical examination of the role of HCPs during communicable disease outbreaks is needed in order to provide guidelines regarding professional rights and responsibilities, as well as ethical duties and obligations. With this paper, we hope to open the social dialogue and advance the public debate on this increasingly urgent issue. (shrink)
Through a careful analysis of Jane Austen's novels that is sure to be controversial, Ruderman offers a unique interpretation of her subject's political philosophy. Her study challenges prevailing Austen scholarship, particularly contemporary feminist readings of Austen which impose historicist conventions upon her works. Locating and examining Austen's thought within a broad political and philosophical context, she concludes that Austen's conservative endorsement of marriage was motivated by her concern with happiness rather than with tradition.
Machine generated contents note: -- Introduction; Martin D. Yaffe and Richard S. Ruderman -- 1. How Strauss Became Strauss; Heinrich Meier -- 2. Spinoza's Critique of Religion: Reading Too Literally and Not Reading Literally Enough; Steven Frank -- 3. The Light Shed on the Crucial Development of Strauss's Thought by his Correspondence with Gerhard Krüger; Thomas L. Pangle -- 4. Strauss on Hermann Cohen's 'Idealizing' Appropriation of Maimonides as a Platonist; Martin D. Yaffe -- 5. Strauss on the Religious (...) and Intellectual Situation of the Present; Timothy W. Burns -- 6. Carl Schmitt and Strauss's Return to Pre-Modern Philosophy; Nasser Behnegar -- 7. Strauss, Hobbes, and the Origins of Natural Science; Timothy W. Burns -- 8. Strauss on Farabi, Maimonides, et al. in the 1930s; Joshua Parens -- 9. The Problem of the Enlightenment: Strauss, Jacobi, and the Pantheism Controversy; David Janssens -- 10. 'Through the Keyhole': Strauss's Rediscovery of Classical Political Philosophy in Xenophon's Constitution of the Lacedaemonians; Richard S. Ruderman -- 11. Strauss and Schleiermacher on How to Read Plato: An Introduction to 'Exoteric Teaching'; Hannes Kerber -- Appendix: Seven Writings by Leo Strauss -- A. 'Conspectivism' (1929); Translated by Anna Schmidt and Martin D. Yaffe -- B. 'Religious Situation of the Present' (1930); Translated by Anna Schmidt and Martin D. Yaffe -- C. 'The Intellectual Situation of the Present' (1932); Translated by Anna Schmidt and Martin D. Yaffe -- D. 'A Lost Writing of Farâbîs' (1936); Translated by Gabriel Bartlett and Martin D. Yaffe -- E. 'On Abravanel's Critique of Monarchy' (1937); Translated by Martin D. Yaffe -- F. 'Exoteric Teaching' (1939); Edited by Hannes Kerber -- G. Lecture Notes for 'Persecution and the Art of Writing' (1939); Edited by Hannes Kerber -- Provided by publisher. (shrink)
Technological advances in veterinary medicine have produced considerable progress in the diagnosis and treatment of numerous diseases in animals. At the same time, veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and owners of animals face increasingly complex situations that raise questions about goals of care and correct or reasonable courses of action. These dilemmas are frequently controversial and can generate conflicts between clients and health care providers. In many ways they resemble the ethical challenges confronted by human medicine and that spawned the creation of (...) clinical ethics committees as a mechanism to analyze, discuss, and resolve disagreements. The staff of the North Carolina State University Veterinary Hospital, a specialty academic teaching institution, wanted to investigate whether similar success could be achieved in the tertiary care veterinary setting. We discuss the background and rationale for this method, as well as the approach that was taken to create a clinical ethics committee. (shrink)
Recovering Reason: Essays in Honor of Thomas L. Pangle is a collection of essays composed by students and friends of Thomas L. Pangle to honor his seminal work and outstanding guidance in the study of political philosophy. These essays examine both Socrates' and modern political philosophers' attempts to answer the question of the right life for human beings, as those attempts are introduced and elaborated in the work of thinkers from Homer and Thucydides to Nietzsche and Charles Taylor.
Anxiety has been associated with enhanced unconscious processing of threat and attentional biases towards threat. Here, we focused on the phenomenology of perception in anxiety and examined whether threat-related material more readily enters anxious than non-anxious individuals’ awareness. In six experiments, we compared the stimulus exposures required for each anxiety group to become objectively or subjectively aware of masked facial stimuli varying in emotional expression. Crucially, target emotion was task irrelevant. We found that high trait-anxiety individuals required less sensory evidence (...) to become aware of the face targets. This anxiety-based difference was observed for fearful faces in all experiments, but with non-threat faces, it emerged only when these were presented among threatening faces. Our findings suggest a prominent role for affective context in high-anxiety individuals’ conscious perception of visual stimuli. Possible mechanisms underlying the influence of context in lowering awareness thresholds in anxious individuals are discussed. (shrink)
This book is a collection of secondary essays on America's most important philosophic thinkers—statesmen, judges, writers, educators, and activists—from the colonial period to the present. Each essay is a comprehensive introduction to the thought of a noted American on the fundamental meaning of the American regime.
Moral leadership matters. As world politics enters a new and dangerous era, judgment, constancy, moral purpose, and a willingness to overcome partisan politicking are essential for America's leaders. Tempered Strength finds the alternative standard of leadership that Americans are seeking in the classical philosophy of prudence. Ethan Fishman's new work brings together leading American political scientists—including Ronald Beiner, Kenneth L. Deutsch, and George Anastaplo—to discuss the evolution of a standard of prudential leadership both reasonable in nature and practical in scope. (...) Section One studies the meaning of prudence and its evolution in the history of political science from Aristotelian phronesis to Xenophon, Thomas Aquinas, Edmund Burke, and Michael Oakeshott. Section Two demonstrates how the theory of prudential leadership can be applied to practical political issues. (shrink)
Collaborative memoirs by co-writers with and without autism can enable the productive interaction of the voices of the writers in ways that can empower rather than exploit the disabled subject. Carly's Voice, co-written by Arthur Fleischmann and his autistic daughter Carly, demonstrates the capacity for such life narratives to facilitate the relational interaction between writers in the negotiation of understandings of disability. Though the text begins by focusing on the limitations of life with autism, it develops into a (...) collaboration which helps both writers move toward new ways of understanding disability and their own and one another's life stories. (shrink)
At the beginning of the 20s, Russia was devastated by famine and plagues. This paper deals with the life and work of the Leipzig physician Paul Carly Seyfarth (1890â1950), who participated in the Red Cross relief expedition to Russia. In 1922/23, Seyfarth was appointed director of the German Alexander-Hospital in Petersburg, which he reorganized and modernized for the treatment of infectious diseases.
Developmental psychologists have long recognized the extraordinary influence of action on learning (Held & Hein, 1963; Piaget, 1952). Action experiences begin to shape our perception of the world during infancy (e.g., as infants gain an understanding of others’ goal-directed actions; Woodward, 2009) and these effects persist into adulthood (e.g., as adults learn about complex concepts in the physical sciences; Kontra, Lyons, Fischer, & Beilock, 2012). Theories of embodied cognition provide a structure within which we can investigate the mechanisms underlying action’s (...) impact on thinking and reasoning. We argue that theories of embodiment can shed light on the role of action experience in early learning contexts, and further that these theories hold promise for using action to scaffold learning in more formal educational settings later in development. (shrink)
This paper investigates what “free-range” eggs are available for sale in supermarkets in Australia, what “free-range” means on product labelling, and what alternative “free-range” offers to cage production. The paper concludes that most of the “free-range” eggs currently available in supermarkets do not address animal welfare, environmental sustainability, and public health concerns but, rather, seek to drive down consumer expectations of what these issues mean by balancing them against commercial interests. This suits both supermarkets and egg producers because it does (...) not challenge dominant industrial-scale egg production and the profits associated with it. A serious approach to free-range would confront these arrangements, and this means it may be impossible to truthfully label many of the “free-range” eggs currently available in the dominant supermarkets as free-range. (shrink)
Between 1904 and 1908, German colonialists in German South West Africa (GSWA, known today as Namibia) committed genocide and other international crimes against two indigenous groups, the Herero and the Nama. From the late 1990s, the Herero have sought reparations from the German government and several German corporations for what occurred more than a hundred years ago. This article examines and contextualizes the issues concerning reparations for historical human rights claims. It describes and analyzes the events in GSWA at the (...) time. It further explores whether international humanitarian law and international human rights law today permit reparatations to be obtained. The article therefore examines the origins of international criminal law, as well as international human rights and humanitarian law, to determine whether what occurred then were violations of the law already in force. Finally, the article examines and evaluates the Herero reparations cases, as well as the potential impact of the cases on the wider reparations movement that sees an increasing number of claims for events that occurred during colonial times. (shrink)
In this article, I consider the ideologies that emerge when disability and LGBTQ rights advocates' ubiquitous calls for visibility collide. I argue that contemporary visibility politics encourage the production of post-racial and post-spatial ideologies. In demanding visibility, disability and LGBTQ rights advocates ignore, ironically, visible markers of difference and assume that being “out, loud, and proud” is desirable trans-geographically. I bring together disability studies and queer rural studies—fields that have engaged in remarkably little dialogue—to analyze activist calls for LGBTQ and (...) disability visibility. The discourses evident in such calls transcend movements and virtual spaces and emerge as some of the LGBTQ women in the rural Midwest whom I interviewed discuss their relations to LGBTQ sexuality and disability. I analyze several cases to illustrate how visibility discourses compel the erasure of material bodies, and in the process, render certain experiences obsolete. I close by considering how my critique of visibility discourses might influence critical discussions of identity politics more broadly. (shrink)
Mechanisms are ubiquitous in sociological explanation. Recent theoretical work has sought to extend mechanistic explanation further still: into cultural and interpretative analysis. Yet it is not clear that the concept of mechanism can coherently unify interpretation and causal explanation within a single explanatory framework. We note that sociological mechanistic explanation is marked by a crucial disjuncture. Specifically, we identify two conflicting mechanistic approaches: Modular mechanism models depict counterfactual dependence among independent causal chains, whereas meaningful mechanism models depict relational interdependence among (...) semiotic assemblages. This disjuncture, we argue, is grounded in incompatible causal foundations and entails mechanistic models with distinct and conflicting evidentiary standards. We conclude by proposing a way forward: a sociological pluralism that is attentive to the productive incongruity of our distinct explanatory models. (shrink)
Feminist philosophers of technoscience have long argued that it is vital that we question biomedical and scientific claims to an immaterial and disembodied objectivity, and also, more specifically, that we disable the conception of medical visualising technologies as neutral or transparent conduits to the “fact” of the body. In this paper we suggest that corporeal feminism is well situated to provide such a critique. Feminist phenomenologists over the past decade have theorised embodiment in a number of critical ways, many deriving (...) concepts from the work of Merleau-Ponty, and emphasising the pliability and diversity of our body images and corporeal schematics. Others such as Elizabeth Wilson, Cathy Waldby and Drew Leder have considered the interdependence of our inner biology or viscerality with the socio-cultural inscriptions of embodiment. In this paper, these adaptations of phenomenology, and their account of the specificity and depth of embodied being, will be discussed and applied to the discourse of biomedicine and the apparatus of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Indo-Pacific Journal of Phenomenology , Volume 6, Edition 1 May 2006. (shrink)
Emerging genomic technologies promise more efficient infectious disease control. Whole genome sequencing is increasingly being used in tuberculosis diagnosis, surveillance, and epidemiology. However, while the use of WGS by public health agencies may raise ethical, legal, and socio-political concerns, these challenges are poorly understood. Between November 2017 and April 2018, we conducted semi-structured interviews with 22 key stakeholders across the fields of governance and policy, public health, and laboratory sciences representing the major jurisdictions currently using WGS in national TB programs. (...) Thematic analysis of the interviews was conducted using NVivo 11. Respondents identified several ethical and practical challenges associated with WGS in TB care and surveillance, all related to issues of trust, including: 1) the power of public health; 2) data sharing and profits derived from surveillance efforts; and 3) concerns regarding who has access to, and can benefit from, the technology. Additional challenges included: the potential utility that WGS adds to a public health program, the risks associated with linking necessary epidemiological metadata to the genomic data, and challenges associated with jurisdictional capacity to implement the technology. Successful implementation of WGS is dependent on fostering relationships of trust between those working with genomics technology and those directly impacted by it, including clinicians. Building trust between the public and the public health agencies and within public health agencies themselves is critical due to the inherent complexity of WGS and its implementation for communicable disease control purposes. (shrink)
The enduring failure of financial institutions to identify and deal with risk events continues to have serious repercussions, whether in the form of small but significant losses or major and potentially far-reaching scandals. Using a mixed-methods approach that combines an innovative version of the classic dictator game to inform prosocial tendencies with the survey-based Theory of Planned Behaviour, we examine the risk-escalation behaviour of individuals within a large financial institution. We discover evidence of purely selfish behaviour that explains the lack (...) significance in pressure to adhere to the Subjective Norms of colleagues around intention to report risks. A finding that has potentially important implications for efforts to instil a high-error management climate and incentivise risk reporting within organisations where risk, if ignored or unchecked, could ultimately have consequences that extend far beyond the institutions themselves. (shrink)
Literary scholars are generally suspicious of the concept of universals: there are presently no candidates for literary universals that a high proportion of literary scholars would accept as valid. This paper reports results from a content analysis of patterns of characterization in folktales from 48 culture areas, aimed at identifying patterns of characterization that apply across regions of the world and levels of cultural complexity. The search for these patterns was guided by evolutionary theory and the findings are consistent with (...) previous research on patterns of altruism, sex differences in mate preferences, sex differences in reproductive strategy, and differing emphases on male and female physical attractiveness. World literature, especially originally oral literature, represents a vast and neglected repository of information that researchers can use to more precisely map the contours of human nature. (shrink)
International and UK legislation and policy development in childcare is placing more emphasis on children's participation rights. This continues to present ethical dilemmas for childcare workers who also have the responsibility to ensure the protection and well-being of children. In Wales, the Welsh Assembly Government has made a commitment to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child in the ?Rights to Action? child welfare policy. In England, the government introduced five aims and outcomes of children's well-being in the (...) ?Every Child Matters? child welfare policy. This paper identifies three barriers to children accessing participation rights, and critically discusses the ethical implications of the English and Welsh child welfare policies for children's participation rights. Family Group Conferences are discussed to highlight dilemmas of participation. (shrink)
An actor's mental states—whether she acted knowingly and with bad intentions—typically play an important role in evaluating the extent to which an action is wrong and in determining appropriate levels of punishment. In four experiments, we find that this role for knowledge and intent is significantly weaker when evaluating transgressions of conventional rules as opposed to moral rules. We also find that this attenuated role for knowledge and intent is partly due to the fact that conventional rules are judged to (...) be more arbitrary than moral rules; whereas moral transgressions are associated with actions that are intrinsically wrong, conventional transgressions are associated with actions that are only contingently wrong. Finally, we find that it is the perpetrator's belief about the arbitrary or non-arbitrary basis of the rule—not the reality—that drives this differential effect of knowledge and intent across types of transgressions. (shrink)
This piece, included in the drift special issue of continent. , was created as one step in a thread of inquiry. While each of the contributions to drift stand on their own, the project was an attempt to follow a line of theoretical inquiry as it passed through time and the postal service(s) from October 2012 until May 2013. This issue hosts two threads: between space & place and between intention & attention . The editors recommend that to experience the (...) drifiting thought that attention be paid to the contributions as they entered into conversation one after another. This particular piece is from the BETWEEN INTENTION & ATTENTION thread: Jeremy Fernando, Sitting in the Dock of the bay, watching... * R.H. Jackson, Reading Eyes * Gina Rae Foster, Nyctoleptic Nomadism: The Drift/Swerve of Knowing * Bronwyn Lay, Driftwood * Patricia Reed, Sentences on Drifitng * David Prater, drift: a way * * * * "… to sleep perchance to dream " 1 To dream: to be not quite asleep, yet not particularly awake. Or, rather: to be awake but not quite know it. For, it is only when we dream, when we are dreaming, that we know that we are not in that final sleep. But we can only know that we are dreaming, that we have dreamt, when we are awake, when we have awoken; after it is too late. When all we know is that the sleep beyond finitude, the sleep that is the step beyond, is not yet upon us, is only to come. To die to sleep … To dream: a sleep that refuses sleep. Perchance to dream: to drift—between sleep and sleep. Aye there's the rub For, can we even know if we have been sleeping? Or, if death has claimed us?—even if a little death. α Ω α Ω α Ω To drift: but from, to, what? For, to drift implies a certain direction that one was headed from, heading to, headed for; without these indications, markers, points in relation with each other, one would just be moving. Can one know—intend—one's drift? Certainly a stunt driver would say so. But even as (s)he is starting her slide, all that (s)he can know is that she is setting the car, herself, the car with herself in it, in motion: after which the drift itself takes over. After which, all (s)he can do is attend to it. At the point of the drift: both (s)he and the car are drifting—here, one might not even be able to separate the movement from those involved in it. Without either of them, there would not be a drift; there is no drifting without the drifter. Both the drifter and the drifting are in a relationality; in which, all that they can know is that they are in relation with each other. Hence, the drift itself is a relationality. A non-essence. But, it is not as if we cannot speak of it. Perhaps though: we can only speak of it as if we can speak of it. Always already an imaginary gesture; where what is being imagined is the relationality between the drift and the ones drifting. Thus, we have a situation where the drifter and drifting are in a relationality; where relationality itself is what is being imagined. Perhaps then, what are we drifting from, to? , is a moot question. As is, what is drifting? Perhaps then, all we can say is drift? To speak of drift is an attempt to speak of the unspeakable. Not that what is speakable and what is unspeakable are antonyms: if that were so, speaking the unspeakable would make no sense, be a contradiction. But that in every act of speaking, something unspeakable is potentially said: something that opens, ruptures, wounds even. And not just that—at the point where it punctures, speaking itself moves out of the way for the unspeakable; speaking itself disappears. "… the whole art is to know how to disappear before dying, and instead of dying. " 2 To disappear; or, to drift out of sight. Where the words themselves slip away. After all: "in the Beginning was the Word. It was only afterwards that Silence came." Perhaps the wish, the hope, is that "the end itself has disappeared …" (Baudrillard, 70) Remaining hidden from us. Perhaps only glimpsed when we dream. Secret. α Ω α Ω α Ω " Bury all your secrets in my skin " (Corey Taylor) Which is the problem: words cling. And they remain. Perhaps not ontologically; but they certainly remain to haunt us. And here, we should not forget Lucretius' lesson that communication occurs in the skin between the parties in communion with each other. Which is not to say that the encounter is determined by atoms—and more precisely atoms that move in straight lines until they collide with each other—that communication is pre-determined. For, one must not forget that will is found, discovered, enacted even, at the moment the atoms swerve. Clinamen . Drift. But even in their movement—drifting—they trace themselves into the skin between; a tangential touching. Perhaps only briefly. But even then, enough … "… there's always texture that betrays the place." (May Ee Wong) Here though, one must not forget that betrayal cannot happen in the absence of love. In fact, betrayal is the very excess of love: where one loves the other so much that one can no longer bear to see the other drift from what (s)he could have been. Whether that idealised other exists or is only in one's head is another question altogether. Perhaps, a fetishised other: keeping in mind that "fetishes are hinged around simulation." After all, "when one is supposed to show up as an oil rig diver no one is expecting actual crude oil" (Amanda Sordes); in fact, actualisation is the perfect way to destroy the fantasy. Perhaps then, the only way to maintain love for another is to maintain a proper distance, as it were, from love: allow the love to constantly alter, change. And here, one must not forget that if love is a relationality between one and another who remains wholly other (otherwise just a mere manifestation of the self), love is a relationality that knows nothing except for the fact that it is in a relation. For, to love one has to attend to—without subsuming another, some other, under oneself. Which means that to love, one has to be willing to risk, to open oneself, to allow oneself to be wounded, torn apart. In new ways, ways that we have yet to understand, come across, ways we do not yet have a name for. Thus, this movement in love is one that occurs in utter blindness; to not only the other, but to what love is. This is love as pure drifting. Perhaps always searching for love itself, without ever knowing what it is that it is looking for. Love: only at the very moment when the word love itself disappears. Perhaps all we can do is sit, and attend: watching the tides flowing away—as if they were having their "last swim of the summer." (Hendrik Speck) Like a butterfly. α Ω α Ω α Ω Isn't it quite amazing how the appearance of a butterfly can inject a stutter or pause into any conversation? Words and words pour out of the animals in assembly, before they are all of a sudden arrested by the passing flight. Heads turn to trace a lilting poetics, attempting to close the distance with this seemingly awkward beauty. There are no straight lines here, only a relative arrival and departure to bracket a brilliant and bewildering trajectory, surging and lurching in a vibrating and nomadic line avant la lettre. (Sean Smith, 'I Seek You: Countdown to Stereoscopic Tear') Before the letter. Before the possibility of naming. Before being sayable. Quite possibly also before language. And yet, a "surging and lurching," a movement with an effect—"vibrating and nomadic"—tracing itself before there is even anything to trace. Leaving something, even if that thing remains unknowable, for us to attend to. Drifting into us. I had some dreams they were clouds in my coffee, clouds in my coffee..." (Carly Simon) NOTES William Shakespeare, Hamlet , Act 3 Scene 1. Jean Baudrillard, Why hasn't everything already disappeared? , 25.  . (shrink)
Medical tourism is international travel with the intention of receiving medical care. Medical tourists travel for many reasons, including cost savings, limited domestic access to specific treatments, and interest in accessing unproven interventions. Medical tourism poses new health and safety risks to patients, including dangers associated with travel following surgery, difficulty assessing the quality of care abroad, and complications in continuity of care. Online resources are important to the decision-making of potential medical tourists and the websites of medical tourism facilitation (...) companies are an important source of online information for these individuals. These websites fail to address the risks associated with medical tourism, which can undermine the informed decision-making of potential medical tourists. Less is known about patient testimonials on these websites, which can be a particularly powerful influence on decision-making. (shrink)