Ethical violations committed on underprivileged populations first surfaced close to 50 years ago with the discovery of the Tuskegee project. The location, a small rural town in Arkansas, and the population, consisting of black males with syphilis, would become a startling example of research gone wrong. The participants of the study were denied the available treatment in order further the goal of the research, a clear violation of the Belmont Report principle of beneficence. This same problem faces researchers today who looking for an intervention in the vertical transmission of HIV in Africa, as there is an effective protocol in industrialized nations, yet they chose to use a placebo-contro...
This case presents a very delicate situation that presents many legal and ethical questions. Do you tell your brother his partner has HIV? I would tell my brother, but the how and when, may vary based on circumstance. From a professional ethical standpoint, it would be unethical to disclose the patient’s HIV status without consent. It would violate the patient’s right to confidentiality, as it is the patient’s choice whom information may be shared with (Beemsterboer, 2010, p. 50). It could also be argued that it is a violation of the principle of nonmaleficence. By providing the patient’s HIV status to people unbound by HIPAA, you are putting the patient at risk of discrimination. This could cause mental anguish or psychological issues, therefore, in essence, inflicting harm on the patient. The most valued application of nonmaleficence is, “One ought to not inflict harm” (Beemsterboer, 2010, p. 42). This would outweigh the ethical argument that you are also preventing harm to your brother, another less important application of nonmaleficence (Beemsterboer, 2010, p. 42). There is one professional ethical principle that I would argue was being applied. This being the principle of paternalism, stating that healthcare providers should do what they deem best for the patient according to their ability and judgment (Beemsterboer, 2010, p. 47). If the patient had a sexual encounter with the brother, and did not inform him of her HIV status, she may be arrested for reckless endangerment according to Pennsylvania law. A case where an HIV-positive person did not disclose their status to their sexual partner was brought before the Pennsylvania Superior Court. According to Pennsylvania law, “Disclosure of HIV status is a defense ag...
To examine the forces that steer the epidemic down its course, the epidemiology of HIV and AIDS in Africa must first be considered. More than 80% of all HIV infections in Africa are acquired through heterosexual contact. This statistic is grossly out of balance with the 13% rate of infection through heterosexual contact in the United States. Vertical transmission from mother to child is the second most common route for the virus to take in Africa (Essex et al., 158). These rates are generally much higher than in the United States and Europe, where the use of a drug called neviropine has drastically reduced mother-to-child transmission. This disparity is a direct result of differences in the nations' wealth. African nations simply cannot afford to provide the drug to infected pregnant women. The continued transmission of HIV through contaminated blood during processes such as blood transfusions is another dismal consequence of poverty and inferior health services in many African countries. This method accounts for the third most important mode of transmission, one that has been virtually eradicated in many countries because the technology is available to prevent it (Essex et al., 159). Part of what makes the situation in Africa so devastating is that the primary roads the virus travels in Africa were shut down long ago in other countries. Much of the world's population already takes many of the roadblocks for granted.
Legislation was passed to protect patients after AIDS epidemic of the 1980’s. Not understanding how AIDS was acquired and passed on to others made every one fearful. Private health information cannot be revealed to any one without permission of the patient not even to their closest family members or to the patient’s employer. We must encourage honesty from the patient to be able to effectively treat their problems.
(Allen et al., 2000) The Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is a clinical situation that requires the ethical principle Justice to be implemented. AIDS can be transmitted by sexual activity, intravenous (IV) drug use, and passed from mother to child. Due to the judgments and fears from the general population and some healthcare professionals, patients who have this disease may find themselves suffering from discrimination in many ways of their lives. This discrimination comes from the stigma placed by the factors in which AIDS is mainly spread. These factors are poverty, homelessness, illiteracy, prostitution, human-trafficking, which create the labels like the “drug user” or “homosexual”.
Living with HIV is a constant battle, with the disease, self, others, and government. If one contrasts HIV there are legal ramifications one must abide too. Each state is different, this paper will explain the laws of, ‘Wisconsin’ and any legal obligations a person with HIV/AIDS must follow. Once getting an HIV test whether one gets a confidential or anonymous test, know that...
Although the positives of mandatory testing appear quite evident in this journal, the benefits of mandatory HIV testing must be substantial and must be continually demonstrated before such a policy is implemented. The consequences must be considered and studied at great length in order to determine whether what I see as a good idea really is. After all, we are making a decision on behalf of an unborn child, a decision that could profoundly affect their entire life.
Prenatal genetic testing is being performed constantly somewhere. Prenatal genetic testing is an ethical issue itself, but the advice these parents are given is a much larger ethical issue. Is it just to preform prenatal testing; in other words is it fair and are the risks and benefits provided equally to the parents? Are parents treated fairly when making the decision for prenatal genetic testing? “As tests become part of routine clinical practice, they become normalized and harder to question or decline” (Deans, Hill, & Lewis 2013). Parents are pressured into preforming these tests because they do not want to feel as if they are being judged or making the wrong decision according to someone else. Prenatal genetic testing can be as simple
Children with AIDS were prevented from going to school; infected adults lost their jobs, their families, and were shunned by a fearful society. Available testing for AIDS was underutilized by the gay population for fear of further social consequences. The government was finally forced to take action through media channels to manage the global threat to all people that AIDS not presented. Out of necessity to manage the virus and provide reassurance to those infected the government implemented privacy laws that protected the individuals who tested positive for the AIDS.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, HIV is an infection that is transmitted by multiple causes through sexual contact, transfusions with infected blood, or by used needles that has infected blood on it (aids.gov, 2009). These cases of transmissions create high risk of an attack of the human immune system. This virus ravages through the immune system at the cellular level (aids.gov, 2009). Through research, it is believed that the virus attaches itself to what’s called a dendritic cell that are found in the areas that line the mouth, the vagina, rectum, penis, and the upper gastrointestinal tract which are linked to a type of immune system cell(aids.gov, 2009). It spreads like wildfire by the dendritic cell carrying over to the human lymph nodes that can infect other immune system cells (aids.gov, 2009). The transmission of this virus attacks cells in your body that can spread into your immune system that can harm the way your body fights against bacteria and other sicknesses.
Last October, the case of Nushawn Williams hit the front pages. He is believed to have infected at least 13 girls and women in Jamestown, New York, with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. His name and face appeared all over the media, shredding the accepted norm of keeping HIV status confidential. In breaking this tradition, public health officials sought to identify and reach the young women he may have infected. Due to this breaking of the silence and reporting the name of the person with this infectious disease at least some women had a greater chance of living because they found out about the virus at an early state. Individuals who are identified by name on disease reports can be contacted by health departments for treatment. Fear of being identified on disease reports could deter people from seeking medical care or disease testing, therefore harming the individual by causing delays in care and threatening public health because such delays could results in further spread of disease. Name reporting of persons with infectious diseases has the potential to benefit both individual and public health.
There are many incidents in the healthcare field where a patient or a worker can be injured or their safety is at risk. This 32 year old nurse at the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation (EGPAF). She works towards the prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV. When she finished her studies in nursing, she was an intern at Kinshasa’s General Provincial Referral Hospital where she first contracted HIV. One day, she accidentally pricked herself with a needle used on a HIV positive patient. She was unaware that this patient was HIV positive, but she reported the incident to her nursing officer. When she told him what happened, he advised her to get get a blood test. Her results were negative. Her intern year was over and she
Spielman, B. (1995). [Review of Women and prenatal testing]. Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics, 23, 199-201.