Pregnant women are classified as a ‘vulnerable’ group

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Did the Zika virus put a heavier burden on women than it did on men when the virus swept through Brazil? A new report by Human Rights Watch argues that the answer is yes

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Too often, people return home from the hospital only to find themselves heading back soon after. Sometimes the need arises because, despite the best care, it is difficult to slow the progression of disease. But other times, it’s because we in the health care system fail to communicate, coordinate and orchestrate the care that people need to successfully make the transition from hospital to home

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The widely accepted principle that mums-to-be are a ‘vulnerable’ group unfairly excludes them from taking part in clinical studies, and perpetuates the knowledge void around the impact of drugs taken during pregnancy, conclude researchers in the Journal of Medical Ethics. In a linked Commentary, Drs Carleigh Krubiner and Ruth Faden, of the Berman Institute, argue that the designation of pregnant women as ‘vulnerable’ “is inappropriate and disrespectful.”

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The statistics show that 3.94 million procedures were carried out in the course of scientific research – a fall of 206,000 on 2015

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Chair of research program’s institutional review board details big challenges ahead. “This is the largest government study ever on its own people.” Nancy Kass, Sc.D., a professor of bioethics and public health at the Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics was talking about the Precision Medicine Initiative, now called the All of Us Research Program

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Time to call in the ethics experts. That’s what the Wellcome Trust did in supporting the formation of the “Ethics Working Group on Zika Virus Research & Pregnancy.” Consider this a Justice League of ethics, vaccine, infectious disease, Zika, and OB/GYN experts that included Ruth Faden, PhD, MPH, Annie Lyerly, MD, MA,, and Maggie Little, BPhil, PhD, The website lists other members of the Working Group.

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The highly anticipated court hearing comes a day after Connie Yates and Chris Gard made a public appearance to state that their son “deserves a chance” to be taken to the United States for an experimental treatment that could potentially improve his condition

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