Ethics and Human Research Covers

Bioethics Case Studies

Tarasoff v. Regents of the University of California

In this case [17 Cal. 3d 425, 551 P.2d 334, 131 Cal. Rptr. 14 (Cal. 1976)] the Supreme Court of California held that mental health professionals have a duty to protect individuals who are being threatened with bodily harm by a patient. The original 1974 decision mandated warning the threatened individual, but a 1976 rehearing of the case by the California Supreme Court called for a “duty to protect” the intended victim. The professional may discharge the duty in several ways, including notifying police, warning the intended victim, and/or taking other reasonable steps to protect the threatened individual… (read more)

Nancy Cruzan, U.S. Supreme Court

In 1983, Nancy Beth Cruzan required cardiopulmonary resuscitation after an automobile accident. She never regained consciousness. While she was weaned off a ventilator, her parents asked to have her feeding tube withdrawn. The hospital refused the request based on Missouri’s requirement for clear and convincing evidence of a patient’s wishes before withdrawing artificial nutrition and hydration. After Missouri prevailed in the state Supreme Court, the Cruzan’s appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, which holds that the Constitution’s 14th Amendment due process liberty interest supports an individual’s right to refuse life sustaining medical treatment, including artificial nutrition and hydration; the court finds that Missouri may require the clear and convincing evidentiary standard of the patient’s wishes; evidence of her wishes is subsequently uncovered and Nancy Cruzan is allowed to die. The Cruzan case, the first U.S. Supreme Court decision on ethical issues at end of life, established a federal 14th Amendment due process liberty interest to be free of unwanted medical treatment, to which all federal and state courts must adhere… (read more)

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Ethics & Human Research (formerly IRB: Ethics & Human Research) aims to foster critical analysis of issues in science and health care that have implications for human biomedical and behavioral research, including developments that bring new challenges to existing ethical, regulatory, and policy frameworks governing research with humans in the United States and elsewhere. Six issues are published each year, containing an assortment of commentaries, case studies, peer-reviewed scholarly articles, and book reviews.

To access supporting information for articles in E&HR, such as tables, figures, and appendices that do not appear in the journal itself, see this page.

For prior issues of IRB: Ethics & Human Research, please visit Jstor.org.

Authors include experts in research ethics who come from a wide range of academic disciplines and professions, researchers who conduct biomedical and behavioral research, and policy-makers. We welcome submissions from new authors. E&HR’s readership includes ethics committee members, institutional leaders, researchers, and scholars from many academic disciplines.

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Karen J. Maschke, editor

Laura Haupt, managing editor

Julie Chibbaro, staff editor

Nora Porter, art director

Editorial Board

Laura Beskow, PhD, MPH Vanderbilt University

Barbara Bierer, MD Harvard University

Alex Capron, LLB University of Southern California

Stephanie Solomon Cargill, PhD St. Louis University

Rebecca S. Dresser, JD, MS Washington University in St. Louis

Carl Elliott, MD, PhD University of Minnesota

Holly Fernandez Lynch, JD, MBE University of Pennsylvania

Joseph J. Fins, MD Weill Cornell Medical College

Paul Ford, PhD Cleveland Clinic

Cristine Grady, MSN, PhD National Institutes of Health Clinical Center

Steven Joffe, MD, MPH University of Pennsylvania

Jonathan Kimmelman, PhD McGill University

Nancy M. P. King, JD Wake Forest University

Susan Lederer, PhD University of Wisconsin–Madison

Alex John London, PhD Carnegie Mellon University

Suzanne Rivera, PhD, MSW Case Western Reserve University

Mark A. Rothstein, JD University of Louisville

Laura Stark, PhD Vanderbilt University

Jeremy Sugarman, MD, MPH, MA Johns Hopkins University

Benjamin S. Wilfond, MD Seattle Children’s Research Institute

ISSN 2578-2355 print; ISSN 2578-2363 online

Publisher: Wiley