Humane Health Care International

Articles from Vol. 12, No. 1, January

Anne's Garden: A Journey of the Human Spirit
Anne, a 37-year old nurse, who had completed her doctorate in psychology the previous year, was admitted to the Palliative Care Unit for terminal care of metastatic breast cancer. Her cancer had been diagnosed just after she had submitted her thesis,...
Caring: The Essence of the Health-Care Professions
The assumption is widely held that members of the health-care professions care. Indeed, many, who have sought help from such professionals, report that they have felt nurtured and understood. However, professionals, clients, and others are also expressing...
Ethics as a Surrogate Religion
The Ethical movement of the 1870s was the foundation of modern ethics and bioethics. Its founders expressed confidence that they could establish a nonreligious (ethical) basis for virtuous behavior. They saw no need for supernatural concepts to bring...
HIV Testing, AIDS, and Confidentiality on the Golf Course: Ars Muta, Vita Brevis
Arecent case that began in golfcourse gossip set landmark legal precedents in South Africa concerning an important aspect of medical ethics and communication. (1),(2) The case led to the country's first Supreme Court decision on medical confidentiality,...
Infusions of Soul
It was a moving, if sobering, experience to read and reflect upon the commentaries of N. Michael Murphy and John Thomas elsewhere in this issue (p. 12,10). We are said to live in an age of materialism, but nowa-days we don't even believe in (or respect)...
Infusions of Soul: A Vital Resource in Life-Threatening Illness
A recent article and editorial in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) highlighted critical problems in the management of life-threatening illness. Since dying and death have almost no place in medical education, the substantial shortcomings...
Listen: Two Voices
In these few lines Tolstoy captures the profoundly different perspectives of the medical profession and the sick person--the former (biomedical) concerned primarily with the pathophysiology of a particular disease process and the impact of disease...
New Fascism?
Last week we were taken aback when a visitor, old enough to remember the original facists -- Adolph Hitler and Benito Mussolini -- asserted that Premier Michael Harris and his common sense revolutionaries were "facists." "The core of fascism -- the...
Tetanus
Tetanus did not frighten me. Neonatal tetanus was part of everyday life at the one-doctor hospital in Azumini, our Nigerian village. My wife, Soon, who is not medically trained, picked out the pathetic spasms and rictus sardonicus in the newborns whose...
What Does the Law Say about Doctors' Duties of Silence?
Michael Simpson's paper, which describes a South African appeal court's finding of liability against a doctor who disclosed a patient's HIV positivity to other health professionals who probably would not have a future association with the patient (see...
Where Religious and Secular Ethics Meet
In Ethics as a Surrogate Religion (see page 20), R.C. Way discusses the demerits of secular ethics vis-a-vis the merits of religious ethics of the theistic persuasion. In his view, while secular ethics has achieved the status of a "surrogate religion,"...