The United States government has resumed capital punishment after a 17-year hiatus. Even setting aside questions of whether the death penalty is legal, ethical, or humane, the renewal of the practice of lethal injection poses some grave concerns, particularly in the context of the global pandemic. According to Department of Justice documents, the government is using the drug pentobarbital to carry out the executions. The government’s ...

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Much controversy surrounds whether or not hydroxychloroquine is effective in preventing or treating infection with COVID-19. While much of the data so far suggests that hydroxychloroquine is not effective at treating COVID-19, and perhaps that it might even be harmful, multiple clinical trials focusing both on prevention and treatment are ongoing. The controversy around ...

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One of the essential ethical foundations of medicine is that there is one standard that we apply to everyone.  Everyone, regardless of their “VIP” status.  Recently, Vice-President Pence visited the Mayo Clinic, and in violation of their stated policy, he did not wear a protective mask as he visited with patients and administrators. The White House subsequently disclosed that Mr. Pence’s press secretary,
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COVID-19 has brought out the best in people, and also the worst. Daily on social media or in the news, I read heartwarming examples of generosity and kindness that challenge me to be a better person. The doctors, nurses, therapists, and chaplains who are selflessly risking their lives, sometimes with substandard personal protective equipment (PPE), rekindles in me the passion for patient care that brought me to medicine in the first ...

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