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Daniel Rodger
London South Bank University
  1. Questionable Benefits and Unavoidable Personal Beliefs: Defending Conscientious Objection for Abortion.Bruce Philip Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger - 2020 - Journal of Medical Ethics 3 (46):178-182.
    Conscientious objection in healthcare has come under heavy criticism on two grounds recently, particularly regarding abortion provision. First, critics claim conscientious objection involves a refusal to provide a legal and beneficial procedure requested by a patient, denying them access to healthcare. Second, they argue the exercise of conscientious objection is based on unverifiable personal beliefs. These characteristics, it is claimed, disqualify conscientious objection in healthcare. Here, we defend conscientious objection in the context of abortion provision. We show that abortion has (...)
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  2. The Problem of Spontaneous Abortion: Is the Pro-Life Position Morally Monstrous?Bruce P. Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger - 2019 - The New Bioethics 25 (2):103-120.
    A substantial proportion of human embryos spontaneously abort soon after conception, and ethicists have argued this is problematic for the pro-life view that a human embryo has the same moral status as an adult from conception. Firstly, if human embryos are our moral equals, this entails spontaneous abortion is one of humanity’s most important problems, and it is claimed this is absurd, and a reductio of the moral status claim. Secondly, it is claimed that pro-life advocates do not act as (...)
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  3. Prolife Hypocrisy: Why Inconsistency Arguments Do Not Matter.Nicholas Colgrove, Bruce Philip Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger - 2020 - Journal of Medical Ethics (Online First):1-6.
    Opponents of abortion are often described as ‘inconsistent’ (hypocrites) in terms of their beliefs, actions and/or priorities. They are alleged to do too little to combat spontaneous abortion, they should be adopting cryopreserved embryos with greater frequency and so on. These types of arguments—which we call ‘inconsistency arguments’—conform to a common pattern. Each specifies what consistent opponents of abortion would do (or believe), asserts that they fail to act (or believe) accordingly and concludes that they are inconsistent. Here, we show (...)
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  4. Gestaticide: Killing the Subject of the Artificial Womb.Daniel Rodger, Nicholas Colgrove & Bruce P. Blackshaw - 2020 - Journal of Medical Ethics.
    The rapid development of artificial womb technologies means that we must consider if and when it is permissible to kill the human subject of ectogestation—recently termed a ‘gestateling’ by Elizabeth Chloe Romanis—prior to ‘birth’. We describe the act of deliberately killing the gestateling as gestaticide, and argue that there are good reasons to maintain that gestaticide is morally equivalent to infanticide, which we consider to be morally impermissible. First, we argue that gestaticide is harder to justify than abortion, primarily because (...)
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  5.  65
    Parental Responsibilities and Moral Status.Bruce Philip Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger - 2020 - Journal of Medical Ethics 47 (3):187-188.
    Prabhpal Singh has recently defended a relational account of the difference in moral status between fetuses and newborns as a way of explaining why abortion is permissible and infanticide is not. He claims that only a newborn can stand in a parent–child relation, not a fetus, and this relation has a moral dimension that bestows moral value. We challenge Singh’s reasoning, arguing that the case he presents is unconvincing. We suggest that the parent–child relation is better understood as an extension (...)
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  6.  50
    Ectogenesis and the Case Against the Right to the Death of the Foetus.Bruce P. Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger - 2019 - Bioethics 33 (1):76-81.
    Ectogenesis, or the use of an artificial womb to allow a foetus to develop, will likely become a reality within a few decades, and could significantly affect the abortion debate. We first examine the implications for Judith Jarvis Thomson’s violinist analogy, which argues for a woman’s right to withdraw life support from the foetus and so terminate her pregnancy, even if the foetus is granted full moral status. We show that on Thomson’s reasoning, there is no right to the death (...)
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  7. Why Ectogestation is Unlikely to Transform the Abortion Debate: A Discussion of 'Ectogestation and the Problem of Abortion'.Daniel Rodger - 2020 - Philosophy and Technology:1-7.
    In this commentary, I will consider the implications of the argument made by Christopher Stratman (2020) in ‘Ectogestation and the Problem of Abortion’. Clearly, the possibility of ectogestation will have some effect on the ethical debate on abortion. However, I have become increasingly sceptical that the possibility of ectogestation will transform the problem of abortion. Here, I outline some of my reasons to justify this scepticism. First, that virtually everything we already know about unintended pregnancies, abortion and adoption does not (...)
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  8. Hormone Replacement Therapy: Informed Consent Without Assessment?Toni C. Saad, Bruce Philip Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger - 2019 - Journal of Medical Ethics 45 (12):1-2.
    Florence Ashley has argued that requiring patients with gender dysphoria to undergo an assessment and referral from a mental health professional before undergoing hormone replacement therapy is unethical and may represent an unconscious hostility towards transgender people. We respond, first, by showing that Ashley has conflated the self-reporting of symptoms with self-diagnosis, and that this is not consistent with the standard model of informed consent to medical treatment. Second, we note that the model of informed consent involved in cosmetic surgery (...)
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  9.  83
    Meeting the Epicurean Challenge: A Reply to Christensen.Bruce P. Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger - 2019 - Journal of Medical Ethics 45 (7):478-479.
    In ’Abortion and deprivation: a reply to Marquis’, Anna Christensen contends that Don Marquis’ influential ’future like ours’ argument for the immorality of abortion faces a significant challenge from the Epicurean claim that human beings cannot be harmed by their death. If deprivation requires a subject, then abortion cannot deprive a fetus of a future of value, as no individual exists to be deprived once death has occurred. However, the Epicurean account also implies that the wrongness of murder is also (...)
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  10. Beyond Infanticide: How Psychological Accounts of Persons Can Justify Harming Infants.Daniel Rodger, Bruce P. Blackshaw & Calum Miller - 2018 - The New Bioethics 24 (2):106-121.
    It is commonly argued that a serious right to life is grounded only in actual, relatively advanced psychological capacities a being has acquired. The moral permissibility of abortion is frequently argued for on these grounds. Increasingly it is being argued that such accounts also entail the permissibility of infanticide, with several proponents of these theories accepting this consequence. We show, however, that these accounts imply the permissibility of even more unpalatable acts than infanticide performed on infants: organ harvesting, live experimentation, (...)
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  11.  8
    Inconsistency Arguments Still Do Not Matter.Bruce P. Blackshaw, Nicholas Colgrove & Daniel Rodger - 2021 - Journal of Medical Ethics 1:1-4.
    William Simkulet has recently criticised Colgrove et al’s defence against what they have called inconsistency arguments—arguments that claim opponents of abortion (OAs) act in ways inconsistent with their underlying beliefs about human fetuses (eg, that human fetuses are persons at conception). Colgrove et al presented three objections to inconsistency arguments, which Simkulet argues are unconvincing. Further, he maintains that OAs who hold that the fetus is a person at conception fail to act on important issues such as the plight of (...)
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  12.  13
    Moral Distress in Healthcare Assistants: A Discussion with Recommendations.Daniel Rodger, Bruce Blackshaw & Amanda Young - 2019 - Nursing Ethics 26 (7-8):2306-2313.
    Background: Moral distress can be broadly described as the psychological distress that can develop in response to a morally challenging event. In the context of healthcare, its effects are well documented in the nursing profession, but there is a paucity of research exploring its relevance to healthcare assistants. Objective: This article aims to examine the existing research on moral distress in healthcare assistants, identity the important factors that are likely to contribute to moral distress, and propose preventative measures. Research Design: (...)
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  13.  62
    Why Arguments Against Infanticide Remain Convincing: A Reply to Räsänen.Daniel Rodger, Bruce P. Blackshaw & Clinton Wilcox - 2018 - Bioethics 32 (3):215-219.
    In ‘Pro-life arguments against infanticide and why they are not convincing’ Joona Räsänen argues that Christopher Kaczor's objections to Giubilini and Minerva's position on infanticide are not persuasive. We argue that Räsänen's criticism is largely misplaced, and that he has not engaged with Kaczor's strongest arguments against infanticide. We reply to each of Räsänen's criticisms, drawing on the full range of Kaczor's arguments, as well as adding some of our own.
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  14.  34
    Defining Life From Death: Problems with the Somatic Integration Definition of Life.Bruce P. Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger - 2020 - Bioethics (5):1-5.
    To determine when the life of a human organism begins, Mark T. Brown has developed the somatic integration definition of life. Derived from diagnostic criteria for human death, Brown’s account requires the presence of a life‐regulation internal control system for an entity to be considered a living organism. According to Brown, the earliest point at which a developing human could satisfy this requirement is at the beginning of the fetal stage, and so the embryo is not regarded as a living (...)
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  15. If Fetuses Are Persons, Abortion is a Public Health Crisis.Bruce Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger - 2021 - Bioethics 35 (5):465-472.
    Pro-life advocates commonly argue that fetuses have the moral status of persons, and an accompanying right to life, a view most pro-choice advocates deny. A difficulty for this pro-life position has been Judith Jarvis Thomson’s violinist analogy, in which she argues that even if the fetus is a person, abortion is often permissible because a pregnant woman is not obliged to continue to offer her body as life support. Here, we outline the moral theories underlying public health ethics, and examine (...)
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  16.  76
    Why a Right to Life Rules Out Infanticide: A Final Reply to Räsänen.Bruce P. Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger - 2019 - Bioethics 33 (8):965-967.
    Joona Räsänen has argued that pro‐life arguments against the permissibility of infanticide are not persuasive, and fail to show it to be immoral. We responded to Räsänen’s arguments, concluding that his critique of pro‐life arguments was misplaced. Räsänen has recently replied in ‘Why pro‐life arguments still are not convincing: A reply to my critics’, providing some additional arguments as to why he does not find pro‐life arguments against infanticide convincing. Here, we respond briefly to Räsänen’s critique of the substance view, (...)
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  17.  69
    Why We Should Not Extend the 14-Day Rule.Bruce Philip Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger - 2021 - Journal of Medical Ethics (10):712-714.
    The 14-day rule restricts the culturing of human embryos in vitro for the purposes of scientific research for no longer than 14 days. Since researchers recently developed the capability to exceed the 14-day limit, pressure to modify the rule has started to build. Sophia McCully argues that the limit should be extended to 28 days, listing numerous potential benefits of doing so. We contend that McCully has not engaged with the main reasons why the Warnock Committee set such a limit, (...)
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  18. An Introduction to Ethical Theory for Healthcare Assistants.Daniel Rodger & Bruce P. Blackshaw - 2017 - British Journal of Healthcare Assistants 11 (11):556-561.
    This article will explore and summarise the four main ethical theories that have relevance for healthcare assistants. These are utilitarianism, deontology, virtue ethics, and principlism. Understanding different ethical theories can have a number of significant benefits, which have the potential to shape and inform the care of patients, challenge bad practice and lead staff to become better informed about areas of moral disagreement.
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  19. Detached From Humanity: Artificial Gestation and the Christian Dilemma.Daniel Rodger & Bruce P. Blackshaw - forthcoming - Christian Bioethics.
    The development of artificial womb technology is proceeding rapidly and will present important ethical and theological challenges for Christians. While there has been extensive secular discourse on artificial wombs in recent years, there has been little Christian engagement with this topic. There are broadly two primary uses of artificial womb technology—ectogestation as a form of enhanced neonatal care, where some of the gestation period takes place in an artificial womb, and ectogenesis, where the entire gestation period is within an artificial (...)
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  20.  28
    Down’s Syndrome Screening and Reproductive Politics: Care, Choice, and Disability in the Prenatal Clinic. [REVIEW]Daniel Rodger - 2018 - The New Bioethics 24 (1):95-97.
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  21.  9
    Morality: Restoring the Common Good in Divided Times.Daniel Rodger - 2020 - The New Bioethics 26 (3):289-292.
    Volume 26, Issue 3, September 2020, Page 289-292.
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  22. Quotas: Enabling Conscientious Objection to Coexist with Abortion Access.Daniel Rodger & Bruce P. Blackshaw - 2020 - Health Care Analysis 29 (2):154-169.
    The debate regarding the role of conscientious objection in healthcare has been protracted, with increasing demands for curbs on conscientious objection. There is a growing body of evidence that indicates that in some cases, high rates of conscientious objection can affect access to legal medical services such as abortion—a major concern of critics of conscientious objection. Moreover, few solutions have been put forward that aim to satisfy both this concern and that of defenders of conscientious objection—being expected to participate in (...)
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  23.  15
    The Case for Compulsory Surgical Smoke Evacuation Systems in the Operating Theatre.Daniel Rodger - forthcoming - Clinical Ethics.
    Perioperative staff are frequently exposed to surgical smoke created by using heat-generating devices like diathermy and lasers. This is a concern due to mounting evidence that this exposure can be harmful with no safe level of exposure yet identified. First, I briefly summarise the problem posed by surgical smoke exposure and highlight that many healthcare organisations are not sufficiently satisfying their legal and ethical responsibilities to protect their staff from potential harm. Second, I explore the ethical case for compulsory smoke (...)
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  24. Using Animal-Derived Constituents in Anaesthesia and Surgery: The Case for Disclosing to Patients.Daniel Rodger & Bruce P. Blackshaw - 2019 - BMC Medical Ethics 20 (1):1-9.
    Animal-derived constituents are frequently used in anaesthesia and surgery, and patients are seldom informed of this. This is problematic for a growing minority of patients who may have religious or secular concerns about their use in their care. It is not currently common practice to inform patients about the use of animal-derived constituents, yet what little empirical data does exist indicates that many patients want the opportunity to give their informed consent. First, we review the nature and scale of the (...)
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  25. Why We Should Stop Using Animal-Derived Products on Patients Without Their Consent.Daniel Rodger - forthcoming - Journal of Medical Ethics.
    Medicines and medical devices containing animal-derived ingredients are frequently used on patients without their informed consent, despite a significant proportion of patients wanting to know if an animal-derived product is going to be used in their care. Here, I outline three arguments for why this practice is wrong. Firstly, I argue that using animal-derived medical products on patients without their informed consent undermines respect for their autonomy. Secondly, it risks causing non-trivial psychological harm. Thirdly, it is morally inconsistent to respect (...)
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  26. Can Conscientious Objection Lead to Eugenic Practices Against LGBT Individuals?Toni C. Saad & Daniel Rodger - 2019 - Bioethics 33 (4):524-528.
    In a recent article in this journal, Abram Brummett argues that new and future assisted reproductive technologies will provide challenging ethical questions relating to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons. Brummett notes that it is likely that some clinicians may wish to conscientiously object to offering assisted reproductive technologies to LGBT couples on moral or religious grounds, and argues that such appeals to conscience should be constrained. We argue that Brummett's case is unsuccessful because he: does not adequately interact (...)
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  27. Responding to Objections to Gatekeeping for Hormone Replacement Therapy.Toni C. Saad, Daniel Rodger & Bruce Philip Blackshaw - 2019 - Journal of Medical Ethics 45 (12):828-829.
    Florence Ashley has responded to our response to ‘Gatekeeping hormone replacement therapy for transgender patients is dehumanising.’ Ashley criticises some of our objections to their view that patients seeking hormone replacement therapy (HRT) for gender dysphoria should not have to undergo a prior psychological assessment. Here we clarify our objections, most importantly that concerning the parity between cosmetic surgery and the sort of intervention Ashley has in mind. Firstly, we show Ashley’s criticism of our comparison is insubstantial. We then examine (...)
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