The Hastings Center Report

The Hastings Center Report is a bimonthly magazine addressing ethical issues in medicine and the life sciences for an audience of physicians and other health care practitioners, attorneys and professionals in business and academia. Founded in Feb. of 1971, The Hastings Center publishes this magazine. Subjects for the Hastings Center Report are medicine and surgery. The Managing Editor is Joyce Griffin. Gregory E. Kaebnick is the Editor.

Articles from Vol. 23, No. 1, January-February

After the Patient Self-Determination Act: The Need for Empirical Research on Formal Advance Directives
In the past decade, formal advance directives have come to be viewed by nearly all parties as having the potential to be a very important component of medical decisionmaking. For the past year, they have been the main object of a federal initiative...
Better Than Physicians
When selecting a chairperson for a teaching hospital's ethics committee, it is best to choose a lower-ranked, nonphysician colleague with extensive bioethics training. This is the conclusion of an empirical study on hospital ethics committees in university...
Bioethics Education: Expanding the Circle of Participants
Bioethics education now takes place outside universities as well as within them. How should clinicians, ethics committee members, and policymakers be taught the ethics they need, and how may their progress best be evaluated? Socrates, perhaps the...
Commentary
The ease with which families and health care professionals abandon their usual commitment to individual autonomy, honesty, and respect for persons where a patient is older and perceived to be at peril is illustrated in this case by the conduct of Mr....
Commentary
Familiar modes of ethical argumentation involve a way of reading a text that can obscure or mute morally rich and relevant features. One way of making moral sense of a story is to read it shrewdly, fleshing out ethically significant details that not...
Even in Defeat, Proposition 161 Sounds a Warning
Occasionally law that isn't made may be as significant as law that is. One such instance was the rejection on 3 November of Proposition 161 by a 54-46 majority of California voters. Had this initiative passed, the state would have been the first in...
Imaginary Trees
"Alternatives, and particularly desirable alternatives, grow only on imaginary trees . . ." The Dutch government committee document Choices in Health Care takes its epigraph from Saul Bellow's Dangling Man and tries to imagine an alternative to the...
Is There a Right to Die?
To speak of rights in the very troubling matter of medically managed death is ill suited both to sound personal decisionmaking and to sensible public policy. There is no firm philosophical or legal argument for a "right to die." It has been fashionable...
Surely the Wizard Will Help Us, Toto? Implementing the Patient Self-Determination Act
Implementing the Patient Self-Determination Act Hospitals, nursing homes, home health agencies, and HMOs recently reached the one-year mark in attempting to implement the Patient Self-Determination Act.[1] Considerably less time has passed since...
The Patient Self-Determination Act: An Early Look at Implementation
The Patient Self-Determination Act has provoked a proliferation of print and electronic materials to assist facilities to implement it. Numerous articles have appeared in medical, nursing, and health care administration journals. Organizations such...
Who's to Choose? Surrogate Decisionmaking in New York State
The problem of finding appropriate decisionmakers for incapacitated patients continues to beleaguer caregivers. In New York state, a specially appointed task force has recently examined this issue and made some novel recommendations. In the celebrated...