Analyze ONE of the following two bioethics cases below using the steps outlined in the Bioethics packet.
Part 1: Outline (6 pts): Using the rubric below, create an outline that highlights the main points of the case you chose. Be sure to include as many things as you can think of in the following categories: ethical question or points of conflict, facts assessment, viewpoints and obligations of interested parties, and possible consequences or outcomes. Make sure to be as thorough as possible in this outline. Facts should only include information described in the case. You do not need to do additional research. However, for the other categories you will want to think outside of what is mentioned directly and include additional factors. You may refer to your Recitation 6: Bioethics packet for guidance.
Abstract (4 pts): After performing the steps above, you should now write a short (1-paragraph) abstract detailing the most important points on both sides of the issue. The purpose of this abstract is to give the reader an unbiased summary of the issue and thus should not include what you think is the correct course of action. Your abstract should include evidence that you considered multiple viewpoints and possible outcomes. Note that this abstract needs only contain the most relevant information and does not have to include everything you have in your outline. You should write this abstract clearly and with proper spelling and grammar.
The following are a list of areas on which this assignment will be graded. We encourage you to review these criteria and use them as a guide.
Or Not Present: Required information not present (0-25%)
Needs Major Improvement:
Only some of the required information is present (50%)
Needs Minor Improvement: Most of the required information is present (75%)
Includes all required information (100%).
Ethical question or points of conflict (1pt)
None to a few of the issues are listed and/or not completely described (<0.25pts) Only some of the points of conflicts are listed and they may or may not be described. (0.25- 0.5) Most to all of the points of conflict are listed, but only some described. (0.5-0.75) Most to all of the points of conflict are listed and described. (0.75-1) Statement of facts (1pt) None to a few of the facts are listed and/or not completely described (<0.25pts) Only some of the facts are listed and they may or may not be described. (0.25-0.5) Most to all of the facts are listed, but only some described. (0.5-0.75) Most to all of the facts are listed and described. (0.75-1) Viewpoints & Obligations of interested parties or stakeholders (2pts) Only a single party is identified and their perspectives/expectations explained or multiple parties merely listed but not explained. (<0.5pts) A few parties are identified and their perspectives/expectations explained, some parties merely listed but not explained or not listed at all. (0.5-1) Most of the important parties are identified and their perspectives/ expectations explained. Some are not listed/not explained. (1-1.5) All of the important parties are identified and their perspectives/ expectations explained. (1.5-2) Consequences or Outcomes (2pts) Consequences of possible actions are not considered. (<0.5pts) A potential consequence is considered in part, but some outcomes are ignored. (0.5-1) Multiple consequences are considered at least in part. (1-1.5) Consequences are completely and thoroughly considered in the paper. (1.5-2) ABSTRACT RUBRIC Not Acceptable Or Not Present: Required information not present (0-25%) Needs Major Improvement: Only some of the required information is present (50%) Needs Minor Improvement: Most of the required information is present (75%) Excellent: Includes all required information (100%). Overall argument (4pts) Writing has numerous errors and is unclear. A logical argument is not apparent. (<1pts) Moderate writing errors, which may distract from the essays readability. Discussion of the topic is incomplete. (1-2) Minor writing errors that do not distract from the essay’s readability. A solid discussion of the chosen topic, some minor points omitted (2-3) Essay shows logic, and understanding of the situation. A thorough discussion of the chosen topic. Writing is clear and error- free. (3-4) BIOL 200: Concepts in Biology Valley of Sorrow BIOETHICS CASE STUDIES (CHOOSE ONLY ONE) by Stephanie Curtis (North Carolina State), Paul Dawson (Clemson), James Moyer (North Carolina State), and Robert Zall (Cornell) Dr. Howard Johnson is a tenured Associate Professor in the biochemistry department at a public university. He has been collaborating with a large, multinational pharmaceutical firm for the past six years. During this time the company has supported his research to the extent that they are the sole source of his funding. The research is widely respected and he receives multiple requests each year for seminars, review articles, etc. He anticipates that his promotion credentials for Full Professor will be forwarded to the University Committee in two to three years. As part of his research program with the company, he serves as an “external reviewer” in the annual evaluation of the Research and Development section of the corporation. In doing so, he signs a confidentiality agreement which covers the research activities discussed during the review. This year Dr. Johnson was inadvertently included in a discussion at the social gathering following the review where one of the corporate scientists revealed that they had been utilizing a widely recognized chemical synthesis to generate new compounds which could be used as antidotes to certain viral infections. Because of prior use and the obvious nature of the synthesis as presented in the literature, neither the process nor the compounds could be patented. Thus, as soon as word of this process leaks out, it would be available to any of their competitors. During the course of this conversation he learned that in secret trials one of the compounds reduced the mortality of Rift Valley Fever by 90%. About 5000 lives are lost annually to this and similar viruses in East African countries. The strategic plan adopted by the company was to withhold the distribution of those compounds. Management decided that they could not afford to release this compound to a developing country which would amount to a purely philanthropic gesture until after they had time to develop the compounds for influenza and the common cold. This would require about five years to obtain all of the permits needed to market such an antidote in developed countries. Unless the market in developed countries could be reached the antidotes would not be economically feasible to develop. However, if developed tens of thousands of additional lives lost to influenza would be saved. 2 BIOL 200: Concepts in Biology The Jenny Ito Case (Bebeau et al. 1995, Copyright © 1995 by Indiana University) Jenny Ito is a second-year graduate student working in the biology lab of Chris Holzer. Ito has been overseeing an experiment that Holzer designed to determine whether a special anti- bacterial coating can reduce the incidence of infection associated with the use of steel surgical pins. With Holzer’s help, Ito has inserted a two-inch pin into the right tibia of thirty rabbits; fifteen of the pins are standard surgical pins, and fifteen have the anti-bacterial coating. About one- quarter inch of each pin protrudes through the skin. Ito also inocculated all of the rabbits at the insertion point with 1 x 108 Staphylococcus aureus and routinely administers morphine at 5 mg/kg to alleviate any discomfort the rabbits may be experiencing because of the procedure. For almost a month, Ito has cared for the rabbits and recorded her observations, watching for any sign of distress or infection. In her weekly meeting with Holzer, Ito reports that none of the rabbits seems to be particularly uncomfortable, and none of them shows any signs of infection. Holzer seems impatient. “If we don’t get an infection, we won’t learn anything. Here’s what we’ll do. Since it would be a shame to have put these rabbits through this, not to mention wasting all your time, without getting some results, I want you to help things along a bit. I want you to innoculate all of the rabbits with 1 x 109 Pseudomonas aeruginosa. We’ll see what happens then.” Ito hesitates. “The protocol specifies Staphylococcus, Dr. Holzer.” Holzer brushes this off. “It’s only a small change. We’ve been approved to run the risk of infecting these rabbits; all we’re going to do is give the process a little boost.” And with that Holzer walks away. Ito knows how to do what she’s been asked, but she is not sure whether she should. When she goes home that night, she mentions her dilemma to her roommate, Ruth Thompson, an English major. Thompson snorts. “Why are you so squeamish now? Go ahead and do it. In fact, if you really want to make him happy, you should put the new bacteria on just the untreated pins. That’ll prove his point!” Ito responds, “Thanks for the sarcasm. You know I can’t do that; it would be bad science.” “The whole thing is bad science,” Thompson retorts. “Torturing bunnies like that.” Ito throws up her hands in exasperation. “You’re not helping me at all, Ruth! I know you don’t approve of animal experimentation, but sometimes it’s necessary, and I’m convinced this is one of those times. Still, Pseudomonas can cause a really nasty infection, and I hate to subject the rabbits to it, especially since it’s so hard to treat. You know, they’re sort of cute and I’ve gotten kind of fond of them over the last month. And then there’s the whole question of the protocol. . . ” Ito moans as she throws herself down on the couch. Thompson takes a deep breath. “Well, your boss has already told you that it falls within the realm of reasonable interpretation of the protocol. You’ve always got to interpret everything, you know. Besides, you always planned on some of these rabbits developing infections. What does it matter if they’re infected by one bacterium or another? Hey, if it makes you feel better, look at it this way: If you don’t get results, you’ll just have to yank the pins from this batch and operate on a new bunch of bunnies. In the end, it would reduce the suffering if you just brewed up the new bugs and poured them on.” With that, Thompson walks away, clearly disgusted by the whole procedure.
Analyze ONE of the following two bioethics cases below using the steps outlined in the Bioethics packet.