Drugs, Ethics, and Quality of Life: Cases and Materials on Ethical, Legal, and Public Policy Dilemmas in Medicine and Pharmacy Practice

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Weigh pivotal healthcare ethics, law, and public policy issues that resulted in tipping-point legal actions

Weighing the ethical considerations in healthcare and drug issues can be emotionally difficult and mentally challenging. Drugs, Ethics, and Quality of Life: Cases and Materials on Ethical, Legal, and Public Policy Dilemmas in Medicine and Pharmacy Practice is a fascinating casebook that clearly discusses the most contentious ethical conflicts that resulted in legal actions. This easy-to-read text provides all sides of controversial real-life cases that provoke spirited debate while teaching the fundamentals of pharmacy law and ethics. The book is a unique exploration into the basic principles of bioethics, end of life care, and drug research.

Drugs, Ethics, and Quality of Life explains in detail the concepts of ethics, quality of life, beneficence, nonmaleficence, autonomy, and justice. Recent cases provide illuminating backdrops for the exploration of these concepts, making them easily understood. A special introduction includes important information about ethics and the pharmaceutical code of ethics. Two appendixes provide further opportunities for discussion and the examination of law and decisions, and resources about drug use decisions and situations. This thought-provoking textbook plainly shows the crucial role ethics plays in today’s society.

Ethical topics explored in Drugs, Ethics, and Quality of Life includes legal cases on:

  • tobacco
  • COX-2 inhibitors
  • medical marijuana
  • the “morning after” pill and other emergency contraceptives
  • pain medications and palliative care drugs
  • physician-assisted suicide
  • drug use in medically futile situations
  • gene therapy
Drugs, Ethics, and Quality of Life is valuable, insightful reading as well as a good adjunct text for pharmacy students, pharmacists, medical students, physicians, bioethicists, students interested in bioethics, institutional ethics committee members, and anyone interested in bioethics.
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Editorial Reviews

From The Critics
Reviewer:Albert I Wertheimer, BS, MBA, PhD(Temple University School of Pharmacy)
Description:This is a rather unusual, but good, book. Each of the eight chapters is independent from the others, and each includes a modern ethical or policy matter with a recent real-life example. For example, chapter 3 about marijuana deals with individual liberties, police power, conflict of laws, etc. In addition, two appendixes deal with continuing ethical and legal questions. It must be said that this is anything but a dry ethics or legal textbook; it is actually enjoyable to read and presents some interesting perspectives that people working in related fields might find stimulating.
Purpose:The purpose is to help pharmacy and medical students, interested practitioners, and others better understand the ethics of drug use and impact of drugs on quality of life. These are worthy objectives, but the relevance of the book will rapidly dissipate as the current events used to illustrate the cases become dated and less well known. For example, the Vioxx case is presented, as is the battle regarding the morning-after pill approval. It is difficult to say whether a book is needed. (Is a new poem needed?) Perhaps not, but it can be the source of valuable information in an easy to digest format in a publication that presents a very complete view of this topic. The book meets the author's objectives, especially since not every pharmacy or medical school has a professor available with the depth of knowledge and insight seen here.
Audience:The author tells us that the book should be read by students in the healthcare professions, as well as healthcareprofessionals, and that lay readers will find the book fascinating and easy to read. This is a reasonable assessment, but one may question how fascinating a lay reader may find the book unless there is a very special interest in the topic. But for persons in the healthcare field at pharmaceutical manufacturers, professional societies, regulatory agencies, and distributors, among others, this could be an illuminating and interesting source of valuable information. The author is uniquely qualified to write this book. Bruce White is a physician, pharmacist, attorney, a board-certified pediatrician, and holder of a fellowship in clinical medical ethics. In addition, some chapters are written by equally qualified persons in their respective disciplines.
Features:The book is useful because it is possible to explore a single topic without becoming mired in other chapters/topics. Everyone knows what it is like when you go to an index and find your subject listed on 43-44, 87, 102,3 and 157. You know that you will not get the full story anywhere. That is not the case here, fortunately. The case method design for presenting the material makes reading and studying less burdensome and more interesting. Other principal topic areas are: professionalism, codes of ethics, pain medicines, assisted suicide, drug use in futile situations, and gene therapy. Two of the best features of the book are an amazingly thorough index of 21 pages and 40 pages of references and citations for serious readers who care to pursue topics in greater depth. If asked for suggestions for a second edition, one might want a greater/broader scope and range of topics.
Assessment:This is a useful addition to one's library. It is understandable, and the indexing and case-format layout make it very helpful when some facts are needed for a lecture or quotation for an article. It complements, rather than competes with, other ethics books, such as Smith et al.'s Pharmacy Ethics (Haworth Press, 1991).
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780789028563
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 12/28/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 352
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Bruce D. White, DO, JD, is a pharmacist, a board-certified pediatrician, and an attorney with fellowship training in clinical medical ethics. He came to St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix, Arizona from Nashville, Tennessee in March 2004 to join the general pediatrics residency faculty. Presently he serves as academic chair of the pediatrics department and directs the clinical ethics fellowship program for the hospital. He holds faculty appointments as Clinical Professor of Pediatrics in the University of Arizona College of Medicine and Clinical Professor of Pharmacy Practice and Science in the College of Pharmacy, Tucson, Arizona; and Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, Creighton University School of Medicine, Omaha, Nebraska. He also serves as Professor and Director of the campus-wide, interdisciplinary Healthcare Ethics and Law (HEaL) Institute at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. He directs an interactive web site (www.ethicsconsultant.com) that offers online clinical ethics coaching, mentoring, and educational services to a pilot group of hospitals and ethics committee members nationwide.
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Table of Contents

• Foreword (Kenneth V. Iserson)
• Preface
• Acknowledgments
• Introduction: Pellegrino on Professionalism: A Human Values Basis for the Healing Arts
• Appendix: Principles of Medical Ethics of the American Medical Association (2001)
• Special Additional Introduction: Ethics and a Code of Ethics in Pharmacy Practice (Joseph L. Fink III)
• Appendix: Code of Ethics for Pharmacists of the American Pharmacists Association (1994)
• Chapter 1. Tobacco and Choices: How Values and Definitions Impact Decision Making
• FDA’s 1996 Tobacco Regulations and FDA v. Brown & Williamson
• Definitions
• Continuing Dilemmas with Tobacco
• Chapter 2. COX-2 Inhibitors and Conflict: How Balancing Beneficence and Nonmaleficence Influences Decision Making
• COX-2 Inhibitors and Their Effects
• The FDA’s Drug Approval Process and VIOXX
• A Balancing Act: Beneficence, Nonmaleficence, and Profit and Other Motives
• Cost-Benefit Analysis, Stakeholders, and Issues Management Analysis
• Continuing Dilemmas with COX-2 Inhibitors
• Chapter 3. Marijuana, Individual Liberty, and Police Power: How Autonomy Drives Decision Making
• Marijuana
• Marijuana Control in the United States
• Personal Freedom, Autonomy, and the California Compassionate Use Act
• State Police Power and Federalism: Gonzales v. Raich
• Continuing Dilemmas with Medical Marijuana
• Appendix: Examples of California’s Criminal Statutes Controlling Marijuana Calif. Health & Safety Code §§ 11357 and 11358
• Chapter 4. The “Morning-After” Pill and Systematic Ethics and Public Policy Analysis: How Justice Tempers Decision Making
• Emergency Contraceptives and Rights
• Balancing “Rights”: Ethics and Public Policy
• Justice and Conscientious Objection
• Conflict and Systematic Ethical Analysis
• Continuing Dilemmas with Emergency Contraceptives
• Chapter 5. Pain Medicines and Palliative Care Drugs
Bergman v. Chin
• When Will Adequate Pain Control Be the Norm?
• Continuing Dilemmas with Pain Medicines and Palliative Care Drugs
• Chapter 6. Drugs Used for Assisted Suicide
• The Debate about Physician-Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia
• The Oregon Death with Dignity Act
• Continuing Dilemmas with Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia
• Chapter 7. Drug Use in “Dwindling” Patients and in Medically Futile Situations
• “Dwindling” Patients and Quality of Life
• Medical Futility
• Surrogate Medical Decision Making
• Continuing Dilemmas Involving Drug Use in “Dwindling” Patients and Medically Futile Situations
• Appendix: Tennessee Health Care Decisions Act (2004)
• Chapter 8. Gene Therapy and Experimentation
• The Federal Drug Research and Patient Safety Framework
Gelsinger v. University of Pennsylvania
• Continuing Dilemmas with Gene Therapy and Experimentation
• Afterword (John Lachs)
• Appendix 1. Law and Decisions
• Objectives
• What Does Law Mean?
• What Are the Four Primary Sources of Law in the United States?
• How Do the People (The Nation’s Citizens) Create Law?
• How Do Legislative Bodies Create Law?
• How Do Federal and State Administrative Agencies Create Law?
• How Do Federal and State Judges Create Law?
• Appendix 2. Continuing Dilemmas Involving Drugs, Ethics, and Quality of Life: An Outline for Further Discussion
• Topics Related to Drug Use
• Topics Related to Professional Virtues
• Notes
• Index

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