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October 14, 1974

Biomedical Ethics: Morality for the New Medicine

Author Affiliations

University of Texas Medical Branch Galveston

JAMA. 1974;230(2):284-285. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03240020072036

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The recent interest in medical ethics shows one particularly important feature: it has not been confined to the medical profession but has engaged the attention of the public as well. This volume addresses that larger audience. It offers an overview of medical ethics from the viewpoint of a theologian with substantial involvement in pastoral care and in teaching medical ethics. The presentation is historical, analytic, and topical. The reader is given a brief review of the traditions of medical ethics fitted into a somewhat Procrustean typology of "Hippocratic," "religious," and "Nuremberg" traditions. Then follows an analysis of ethical decision-making in medicine. These considerations are used for examining the ethical problems involved in medical intervention in human reproduction, transplantation, psychosurgery and other forms of behavior control, and the issue of the artificial extension of the human life span.

The result is a pleasant, at times anecdotal, review of many of the