Ethics & Society Newsfeed: April 1, 2016

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Heroin Epidemic Is Yielding to a Deadlier Cousin: Fentanyl
Cheaper and far more potent, the synthetic painkiller is becoming the drug of choice for some addicts — and is killing them more quickly.

Who’s “They?”
We are witnessing a great explosion in the way that human beings are allowed to express their gender identities. We are also hearing a lot of awkward conversations. What are we supposed to call everyone?

Hunting the Genetic Signs of Postpartum Depression With an iPhone App
With mothers and medical providers clamoring for answers about postpartum depression, scientists are beginning a major effort to understand the genetic underpinnings of mood disorders that afflict millions of women during and after pregnancy.

The Complicated Ethics of Penis Transplants
What to know about a groundbreaking clinical trial.

We’re More Honest With Our Phones Than With Our Doctors
By divulging every last detail to these apps, we make them incredibly valuable — but also potentially ruinous, if our most sensitive records were to fall into the wrong hands.

Robert De Niro Pulls Anti-Vaccine Documentary From Tribeca Film Festival
Facing a storm of criticism over its plan to show a documentary about the widely debunked link between vaccines and autism, the Tribeca Film Festival on Saturday pulled the film from its schedule next month.

A doctor removed the wrong ovary, and other nightmare tales from California licensing records
The main job of state medical boards is to license doctors and to investigate complaints. But their findings are often difficult for the average consumer to access, meaning that many Americans are none the wiser that the doctor they may be visiting is on probation for egregious errors or ethics violations.

Medicine and Economics
They’re sicker, plus ACA enrollees cost more in care, major insurer finds
Consumers who signed up for Blue Cross Blue Shield health plans through the Affordable Care Act’s insurance marketplaces these last two years tended to be sicker and incurred greater medical costs than people with BCBS coverage through their jobs.

What would happen if Americans were paid to donate their kidneys?
One of the strictest tenets of the U.S. transplant system is that paying for organs is forbidden. The ban, imposed by the National Transplant Act of 1984, was designed to protect the poor from being taken advantage of by the wealthy. Impassioned supporters of the law argued that compensating people for body parts is exploitative and treats donors like subhumans, and the debate was essentially closed for more than three decades — until recently.

Dying has become more expensive for some thanks to a Valeant price hike
Want to die with dignity? There is a coupon for that, too.

Zika
Zika Study Could Help Overcome an Obstacle to Vaccine Research
The first new mouse model in which the Zika virus can be tested was described in a medical journal on Monday.

C.D.C. Offers Guidelines for Delaying Pregnancy After Zika Exposure
Federal health authorities said for the first time on Friday how long couples who have been exposed to the Zika virus should wait before trying to get pregnant.

 


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