Who owns DNA?

DNA technology has become a ubiquitous part of today’s culture.  TV detectives work magic with the smallest bit of tissue to extract the identity of the killer, while actress Angelina Jolie underwent a preventive surgery because a genetic diagnostic test revealed she had a mutated BRCA1 gene.  As genetic testing of all kinds becomes cheaper [...]

Reinventing a Staple of Medicine: Shared Medical Appointments and their Future

Making its way across health news websites is a recently published study from Annals of Family Medicine reporting patient satisfaction with a unique type of doctor’s appointment: a shared medical appointment. Instead of the classic doctor-patient meeting, shared medical appointments (SMAs) include a group of patients—about ten, but it varies—who see their doctor together. Although [...]

Health Data Privacy Developments from Across the Pond

In light of the Snowden revelations and subsequent NSA scandal, there has been a spotlight directed upon data privacy.  It is against this backdrop that the EU is developing a new set of privacy regulations, while in the UK a pilot program for collecting and sharing health data has come under intense scrutiny. The proposed [...]

Making Treatment Decisions with the Help of Other Patients

The establishment of informed consent was a hallmark in the world of medicine and bioethics, giving patients unprecedented autonomy over their own medical care. However, in spite of its intended benefits, many have questioned its efficacy in providing patients the opportunity to make an informed decision. In an attempt to provide better decisional support, researchers [...]

Brain Wave Testing & Disparities in ADHD: The Implications of NEBA

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently announced its approval of the Neuropsychiatric EEG-Based Assessment Aid (NEBA) System, which they claim shows promising results for more accurate diagnosing of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children and adolescents 6 to 17 years old. NEBA, which is based on electroencephalogram (EEG) technology, consists of a short, non-invasive test [...]

Is Liability to Blame for an OB/GYN Shortage

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has repeatedly expressed concern over the impending shortage of physicians in their specialty [i]. This worry has only been exacerbated by the number of doctors leaving the field recently. Many of these departing practitioners explain that they only plan to drop the obstetrics portion of their practice, since [...]