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Book and Media Reviews
October 10, 2012

Informed Consent, Proxy Consent, and Catholic Bioethics: For the Good of the Subject

Author Affiliations

Book and Media Reviews Section Editor: John L. Zeller, MD, PhD, Contributing Editor.

Author Affiliation: Department of Medicine, Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (

JAMA. 2012;308(14):1484. doi:10.1001/jama.308.14.1484

In the field of bioethics, the principle of free and informed consent is well recognized and regarded as foundational. All who are engaged in human scientific research, and indeed everyone who encounters patients in the clinical realm, understand this principle. However, I suspect that few appreciate the depth to which this principle is rooted, or how it has evolved to its current state in research bioethics and, by extension, clinical medicine.

In Informed Consent, Proxy Consent, and Catholic Bioethics, one of a collection of works in the Catholic Studies in Bioethics subseries of Springer's Philosophy and Medicine series, Grzegorz Mazur plumbs the depths of bioethics, uncovering not only the historical elements of the principle of free and informed consent but also revealing irreducible realities on which this principle rests.

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