Using payment to recruit research subjects is a common practice, but it raises ethical concerns that coercion or undue inducement could potentially compromise participants’ informed consent. This is the first national study to explore the attitudes of IRB members and other human subjects protection professionals concerning whether payment of research participants constitutes coercion or undue influence, and if so, why. The majority of respondents expressed concern that payment of any amount might influence a participant’s decisions or behaviors regarding research participation. (...) Respondents expressed greater acceptance of payment as reimbursement or compensation than as an incentive to participate in research, and most agreed that subjects are coerced if the offer of payment makes them participate when they otherwise would not or when the offer of payment causes them to feel that they have no reasonable alternative but to participate . Views about undue influence were similar. We conclude that human subjects protection professionals hold expansive and inconsistent views about coercion and undue influence that may interfere with the recruitment of research participants and impede valuable research. (shrink)
Dilemmas about resuscitation and life-prolonging treatment for severely compromised infants have become increasingly complex as skills in neonatal care have developed. Quality of life and resource issues necessarily influence management. Our Institute of Medical Ethics working party, on whose behalf this paper is written, recognises that the ultimate responsibility for the final decision rests with the doctor in clinical charge of the infant. However, we advocate a team approach to decision-making, emphasising the important role of parents and nurses in the (...) process. Assessing the relative burdens and benefits can be troubling, but doctors and parents need to retain a measure of discretion; legislation which would determine action in all cases is inappropriate. Caution should be exercised in involving committees in decision-making and, where they exist, their remit should remain to advise rather than to decide. Support for families who bear the consequences of their decisions is often inadequate, and facilitating access to such services is part of the wider responsibilities of the intensive care team. The authors believe that allowing death by withholding or withdrawing treatment is legitimate, where those closely involved in the care of the infant together deem the burdens to be unacceptable without compensating benefits for the infant. As part of the process accurate and careful recording is essential. (shrink)
Clinicians have an obligation to ensure that patients with adequate capacity can make autonomous decisions. Thus, patients who choose to forego treatment and leave hospitals “against medical advice” are typically allowed to do so. But what happens when they require clinicians’ assistance to physically leave? Is it incumbent upon clinicians to not only respect and fulfill patients’ requests with which they disagree, but to physically assist in their fulfillment? We attempt to develop an ethical framework wherein clinicians can honor patients’ (...) wishes without necessarily sacrificing their own moral position. (shrink)
Although respect and human presence are frequently reported in nursing literature, these are poorly defined within a nursing context. The aim of this study was to examine the differences, if any, in the perceived frequency of respect and human presence in the clinical care, between nurses and patients. A convenience sample of 1537 patients and 1148 nurses from six European countries (Cyprus, Czech Republic, Finland, Greece, Hungary and Italy) participated in this study during autumn 2009. The six-point Likert-type Caring Behaviours (...) Inventory-24 questionnaire was used for gathering appropriate data. The findings showed statistically significant differences of nurses’ and patients’ perception of frequency on respect and human presence. These findings provide a better understanding of caring behaviours that convey respect and assurance of human presence to persons behind the patients and may contribute to close gaps in knowledge regarding patients’ expectations. (shrink)
We consider the problem of whether there are deterministic theories describing the evolution of an individual physical system in terms of the definite trajectories of its constituent particles and which stay in the same relation to quantum mechanics as Bohmian mechanics but which differ from the latter for what concerns the trajectories followed by the particles. Obviously, one has to impose on the hypothetical alternative theory precise physical requirements. We analyze various such constraints and we show step by step how (...) to meet them. This way of attacking the problem turns out to be useful also from a pedagogical point of view since it allows one to recall and focus on some relevant features of Bohm's theory. One of the central requirements we impose on the models we are going to analyze has to do with their transformation properties under the transformation of the extended Galilei group. In a context like the one we are interested in, one can put forward various requests that we refer to as physical and genuine covariance and invariance. Other fundamental requests are that the theory allows the description of isolated physical systems as well as that it leads to a solution (in the same sense as Bohmian mechanics) of the measurement problem. We show that, even when all the above conditions are taken into account, there are infinitely many inequivalent (from the point of view of the trajectories) bohmian-like theories reproducing the predictions of quantum mechanics. This raises some interesting questions about the meaning of Bohmian mechanics. (shrink)
Plato is one of the key ancient authors studied by both classicists and philosophers. This long-awaited new edition contains seven of the dialogues of Plato, and is the first in the five-volume complete edition of his works in the Oxford Classical Texts series. The result of many years of painstaking scholarship, the new volume will replace the now nearly 100 year old original edition, and is destined to become just as long-lasting a classic.