Tuesday, October 8, 2013

A Bioethical Shutdown


I visited Bioethics.gov today hoping to read new educational materials from the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues. The new resources are based “on real-life ethical challenges addressed by the Bioethics Commission, including its investigation into the 1940s U.S. Public Health Service STD research in Guatemala, and how to advance whole genome sequencing while protecting individuals' privacy.”

The Guatemala study is of particular interest to Community Voices in Medical Ethics, following our own study calling for stronger advocacy for research participants -- and to stop calling those participants “subjects.”

Alas, catching up on the Presidential Commission’s new materials will have to wait. My education was limited to this reminder of the government shutdown:

“Due to the lapse in government funding, Bioethics.gov is unavailable during the government shutdown. The Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues is not able to respond to inquiries until appropriations are enacted. Updates regarding government operating status and resumption of normal operations can be found at usa.gov.  We regret any inconvenience.”

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