What If We Treated Gun Violence Like A Public Health Crisis?

NPR, 15 November 2017
Author: Alison Kodjak
“More than 30,000 people are killed with guns in the U.S. every year. That’s more than die of AIDS, and about the same number as die in car crashes or from liver disease. But unlike AIDS or car crashes, the government doesn’t treat gun injuries or deaths as a public health threat.”
Find article here.

Investor group warns U.S. farm antibiotic policy lagging

Reuters, 15 November 2017
Author: Lisa Baertlein
“The United States is falling behind Europe in the fight to curb the overuse and misuse of antibiotics in meat production and experts are warning of the possibility of dangerous drug-resistant “superbug” infections as a result, according to a new report on Tuesday. The World Health Organization (WHO) says the farm sector consumes around 80 percent of all medically important antibiotics in some countries.”
Find article here.

The evolution of public health ethics frameworks: systematic review of moral values and norms in public health policy

Med Health Care and Philos, 2017, 1-16
Authors: Mahmoud Abbasi, Reza Majdzadeh, Alireza Zali, et al.
“Given the evolution of the public health (PH) and the changes from the phenomenon of globalization, this area has encountered new ethical challenges. In order to find a coherent approach to address ethical issues in PH policy, this study aimed to identify the evolution of public health ethics (PHE) frameworks and the main moral values and norms in PH practice and policy.”
Find article here.

Insurers discriminating against people who get genetic test results could hobble research, bioethicists warn

SMH, 8 November 2017
Author: Kate Aubusson
“Insurers are able to discriminate against individuals who undergo genetic testing, and that threatens to hobble genomic research, bioethics and law experts have warned in a recent paper published in Public Health Genomics. Anyone who receives their results of genetic testing as part of a research project needs to disclose them to insurers if asked, despite the Human Genetics Society of Australasia calling for research findings to be excluded. Insurers can deny cover or hike up premiums for healthy individuals who discover they carry a mutation for a condition they may never develop based on the testing results, the authors warned.”
Find article here.

Minors, Moral Psychology, and the Harm Reduction Debate: The Case of Tobacco and Nicotine

Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law 2017, 42(6): 1099-1112
Author: Lynn T. Kozlowski
“Harm reduction debates are important in health policy. Although it has been established that morality affects policy, this article proposes that perspectives from moral psychology help to explain the challenges of developing evidence-based policy on prohibition-only versus tobacco/nicotine harm reduction for minors.”
Find article here.

Uruguay’s mandatory breast cancer screening is challenged

The BMJ Opinion, 26 October 2017
Author: Ana Rosengurtt
“In 2006, it became mandatory for all women aged 40-59 in Uruquay to have a free mammography every two years, despite its National Cancer Registry showing a sustained decrease in breast cancer mortality since 1990. President Tabaré Vázquez, an oncologist by profession, instigated this. But, as previously reported in The BMJ: “It’s the only country in the world with this sort of mandatory screening. And there is absolutely no scientific basis for applying this to women between 40 and 50.”
Find article here.

Is Japan losing the fight against smoke-free legislation?

The BMJ Opinion, 24 October 2017
Author: Yusuke Tsugawa, Ken Hashimoto et al
“The WHO published a report earlier this year on the global tobacco epidemic in which it reported that comprehensive smoke-free legislation is in place to protect approximately 1.5 billion people in 55 countries. Currently, as many as 168 countries—including Japan—have signed the WHO’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC). However, Japan’s tobacco policy lags behind the FCTC’s standard and is currently ranked the lowest level for smoke-free policy in the world.”
Find article here.

Assisted dying is one thing, but governments must ensure palliative care is available to all who need it

The Conversation, 24 October 2017
Author: Stephen Duckett
“Assisted dying moved one step closer to reality in Victoria last week with the authorising bill passing the lower house with a comfortable 47-37 majority. Throughout the debate, many MPs spoke of terrible personal experiences of the deaths of family members. Such harrowing stories were also present in submissions to the parliamentary inquiry into end-of-life choices, that recommended an assisted dying regime leading to the bill.”
Find article here.

Round table: The Moral Mandate of Public Health – Back to Basics

European Journal of Public Health, Volume 27, Issue suppl_3, 2017
Chairs: John Middleton, Els Maeckelberghe
“The core mission of Public Health is to protect and promote health through the organized efforts of society. The use of political power to achieve public health goals, and the imperatives to improve health and reduce health inequalities, suggest an inherently moral agenda, and thus require a sound moral mandate. However, concerns have arisen about a lack of unified vision and leadership within Public Health, with consequent concerns about heightened threats to the health of the public.”
Find article here.