When the Womb Is a Crime Scene

September 23, 2015

Alabama has turned hundreds of pregnant women into felons for using drugs — even when they’re legal and the kids turn out fine

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All Hat, No Cattle

August 18, 2015

The false hope of right-to-try laws. Alison Bateman-House & Arthur Caplan write: “Are right-to-try laws a good idea? In 2014, they began appearing throughout the United States, first in Colorado and now in 23 states, with several more considering passing versions of this popular legislation.”

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The unorthodox petition — which sought a writ of habeas corpus, an age-old method of challenging unlawful imprisonment — was the latest attempt by the nonprofit Nonhuman Rights Project to establish that apes are “legal persons”

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Two sting videos that claim to implicate Planned Parenthood in the illegal practice to selling fetal tissue for a profit prompted a Congressional investigation of the organization. But it doesn’t mean that research on fetal tissue is wrong. Or that it should be stopped. With comments from our Debra Mathews

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“That [goal] sounds pretty good,” Avorn says. But he says the bill is “loaded with a lot of provisions that were heavily influenced by pharmaceutical and biotech and medical device lobbyists that really do some pretty worrisome things.”

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The law generally mandated that couples demonstrate a history of infertility, and insurers often interpreted that to mean having intercourse during that time without conceiving. What’s more, by law, coverage would be permitted only for infertility treatments that used the husband’s sperm. This month, however, those restrictions were eliminated for married same-sex couples

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surrogacy arrangements are often informal agreements, and they can go wrong. A surrogate may face unexpected medical bills, or the intended parents may change their mind. Yet Mardi Palan is excited about becoming a surrogate, and that’s due in part to a very thorough contract she has signed governing the terms of her surrogacy

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A US company is the first to face penalties under the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA), a law that protects the privacy of genetic information. On 22 June, a federal court jury in Georgia awarded US$2.25 million to two men whose employer tested their DNA, seeking to identify who had repeatedly left feces in one of its warehouses

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