Matching Items (62)

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How Summer Camps Can Aid Palliative Care for Cancer Patients

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The rate of cancer incidence is a morbid figure. Twenty years ago, 1 in 2 men and 1 in 3 women were predicted to be afflicted by cancer throughout their

The rate of cancer incidence is a morbid figure. Twenty years ago, 1 in 2 men and 1 in 3 women were predicted to be afflicted by cancer throughout their lifetime (Cancer Facts & Figures- 1998). In 2017, the rate remains the same ("Cancer Statistic Center"). Every year, more people are affected by cancer, which is a physiologically, psychologically, emotionally and socially devastating disease. And yet the language and metaphors we use to describe cancer focus our attention on the "fight" of the heroic individual against the brutal disease or on finding a cure. Despite this narrow rhetoric, there are many meaningful, supportive, and palliative measures designed to substantively and holistically care for cancer patients, beyond their medical treatment. Many of these interventions help the patient feel supported (and less alone in this "battle") by building robust communities. In this thesis, I argue the summer camps for children affected by cancer are meaningful interventions that offer palliative care throughout their treatment by creating support networks with peers going through similar medical procedures. Drawing on anecdotal evidence from three cancer camps and a detailed literature review of a subset of palliative interventions designed to promote well-being, this thesis proposes a new model for a summer camp that focuses on emotional processing emotional expression, positive psychology in order to improve palliative care for cancer patients.

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  • 2017-12

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An Ethical Evaluation of the Boarding of Psychiatric Patients in the Emergency Department

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My thesis project, "An Ethical Evaluation of the Practice of Psychiatric Patient Boarding in the Emergency Department" sets out to address a relatively nameless problem in the healthcare system in

My thesis project, "An Ethical Evaluation of the Practice of Psychiatric Patient Boarding in the Emergency Department" sets out to address a relatively nameless problem in the healthcare system in the United States. This problem is the boarding of psychiatric patients in emergency departments nationwide. What is psychiatric patient boarding? This term refers to the increasingly common practice of care provided to psychiatric patients upon arrival at an emergency department. When inpatient psychiatric beds or services are not available, "boarding" is performed by simply storing mentally ill patients in hallways or other emergency room areas while they wait for the availability of psychiatric treatment, which may take hours, or in more extreme cases has been cited to last for days at a time (Alakeson et. al, 2010). While any individual can expect to wait a prolonged period of time for medical care in the increasingly overcrowded emergency departments, the psychiatric patient experience is astonishingly unique. A psychiatric patient presenting, or arriving, at the ED in crisis can often times find him or herself not only waiting hours to be admitted and assessed as a medical patient would, but with a limited and ever attenuating supply of psychiatric treatment rooms and services, these patients will often times be harbored in an ED room designed for short-term medical treatment without care until psychiatric services become available. Patients can be left waiting for days for an in-patient vacancy; all the while not receiving true psychiatric treatment and in some cases being held against their will in a chaotic environment far from conducive for treatment of a mental health ailment. In this analysis, I will discuss and review aspects of psychiatric patient boarding from various literature, such as why boarding occurs from a hospital and historical standpoint, negative implications of boarding for psychiatric and medical patients, and the burden placed on the hospital when practicing psychiatric boarding. To learn further on the topic, I will share the results from 14 semi-structured, qualitative interviews performed with ED healthcare professionals, being physicians, charge nurses, nursing staff, and certified nursing assistants or patient safety advocates. This portion of my investigation is designed to offer a perspective that the literature cannot, being a first hand outlook on psychiatric boarding from those working on the front line, focusing on topics of all aspects, such as causation, consequences for all involved parties, and proposed solutions.

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  • 2017-05

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Physicians-Assisted Suicide as a Legal Option in the United States

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The purpose of this thesis project is to analyze the legalization of physician-assisted suicide (PAS) as an option for the terminally ill in the United States from a rule-utilitarian perspective.

The purpose of this thesis project is to analyze the legalization of physician-assisted suicide (PAS) as an option for the terminally ill in the United States from a rule-utilitarian perspective. The moral theory of utilitarianism is a consequentialist theory that judges the moral permissibility of an action or rule based on the best possible outcomes. Rule-utilitarianism conforms an action to an articulated moral rule that leads to the greatest good whereas act-utilitarianism only considers the best possible consequences on a case-by-case basis. Since legalization of PAS is a policy that requires passage of laws, rule-utilitarianism is more appropriate compared to act-utilitarianism. Euthanasia is a controversial topic worldwide that dates as far back as the 5th century BC with the Greeks and Romans. Comparing the euthanasia then and now, the nations are slowly but surely reconsidering the policies regarding PAS. There are both benefits and harms that the paper addresses. The possible benefits include the prevention of elongation of suffering, both physically and psychologically, respect for the patient autonomy, the right to die with dignity, and the decriminalization of the innocents. The potential harms include undermining the integrity of the medical profession and the aim of medicine, violation of the Hippocratic Oath, targeting of the vulnerable population, unmotivating the efforts to develop and improve better palliative and hospice care, and the slippery slope argument, which implies that the legalization of PAS would eventually set the precedence to legalizing voluntary active euthanasia and nonvoluntary euthanasia. Overall, the moral calculus that the paper provides comes to the conclusion that the benefits outweigh the harms.

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  • 2017-05

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Personalized Medicine and the Concept of Empowerment

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With advances in biotechnology, personalized medicine has become an ever-expanding field. Even with so much growth, the critics equally match the proponents of personalized medicine. The source of their disagreement

With advances in biotechnology, personalized medicine has become an ever-expanding field. Even with so much growth, the critics equally match the proponents of personalized medicine. The source of their disagreement is rooted in the concept of empowerment. This analysis utilizes the personal genomics company 23andMe and their relationship with the Federal Food and Drug Administration to illustrate varying views of empowerment. Specifically, the case study focuses on the ability to provide direct-to-consumer health reports to patients independent of physicians. In doing this, larger issues of what is at stake in personalized medicine are uncovered. These include but are not limited to: who determines what individuals get empowered and what information is determined good versus bad.

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  • 2015-05

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Scalpel Slaves and Surgical Sculptors: Cosmetic surgery, management of the media and the implications of commercialized medicine

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Of the over 17 million surgical and minimally-invasive cosmetic procedures performed in the United States in 2016, women accounted for over 90% of patients and nearly 70% of all patients

Of the over 17 million surgical and minimally-invasive cosmetic procedures performed in the United States in 2016, women accounted for over 90% of patients and nearly 70% of all patients were white. The goal of cosmetic surgery is to surgically restructure a healthy body part to more closely represent the contemporary ideal of what defines a particular gender. For example, femininity being linked to large breasts and small waist-to-hip ratio maintains binary heteronormative standards of what female body should look like. Plastic surgeons rely on advertising to attract patients for their businesses, since insurances do not cover elective cosmetic procedures. The ethical dilemma with this medical profession is with establishing aesthetic criteria for categorizing which bodies are considered normal and which are deviant. To understand the role of the physician in perpetuating cultural standards of beauty and promote surgery through their advertising, a random sample of 5 board-certified plastic surgeons from Scottsdale, AZ 85258 was obtained, focusing primarily on the images and textual content of their web pages. Of the 50 images sampled, nearly 75% of images portrayed white women. Women of color did not present in any of the photos. 52% of the home page images sexualized female clients using seductive posing and lingerie and promoted femininity using makeup and long hair. The language used in these websites criticized the presurgical female body and suggested that only physicians could eradicate their deficiencies, thereby normalizing cosmetic surgery as a means of beauty enhancement and maintaining the cultural superiority of doctors. 60% of websites failed to include adequate description of surgical risk. By choosing cosmetic surgery, women are negotiating their lives and acting as agents, even under circumstances that they cannot control such as the withholding of information, minimizing of risk or the social context and its corresponding pressures. Although the forewarning of surgical risk is rarely effective as a deterrent, it is the responsibility of the physician to provide the patient with all the information to the best of their ability so that they can decide what's best for their present circumstance, although rarely taken under conditions of perfect knowledge or absolute freedom from societal pressures. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons should work in conjunction with the Better Business Bureau's National Advertising Review Council to mediate regulatory solutions and increase public assurance in the credibility of advertising, perhaps an initiative similar to that of advertising for the cigarette industry. A pledge from the cosmetic surgery industry in conjunction to the Hippocratic Oath of the American Medical Association, which outlines the physician's responsibility to the patient within the context of advertising and marketing, could strengthen social responsibility and foster stronger, more honest relationships between surgeons and consumers.

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  • 2017-05

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Physician and Medical Ethics Committee Members' Perceptions of Death with Dignity in Arizona

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Death with Dignity is a concept that initially began as a set of philosophical and ethical principles that sought to define what it meant to die a "good" death that

Death with Dignity is a concept that initially began as a set of philosophical and ethical principles that sought to define what it meant to die a "good" death that was reasonable to the person experiencing the dying process. This dying process is terminal illness, or any condition that cannot be cured and who's ultimate prognosis is death. Today, Death with Dignity still embodies this, but it is also a set of legal and medical treatments and practices that can be used to aid terminal patients in accomplishing a "good" death. The Death with Dignity treatment options that are chiefly discussed in this study are patient withdrawal of care, patient control of pain medications, and physician-assisted suicide. Physician-assisted suicide is legal in six states in the US excluding Arizona. Considering that Oregon is the first state to pass a Death with Dignity Act and that it is the precedent for all other Acts, this study sought to understand the differences in perception of physician-assisted suicide between Arizona and Oregon in the pursuit of clarifying what barriers are still in place in Arizona to passing a Death with Dignity act. To ask the question of "Do physicians and ethics committee members in Arizona support Death with Dignity in the forms of patient control of pain medications, withdrawal of treatment, and physician-assisted suicide?", a literature review was conducted to determine important national and local perceptions of physician-assisted suicide and Death with Dignity, a 14-question, structured survey was created with the identified concerns, and it was distributed to Arizona health care workers by email and in person. This survey was approved by ASU's Institutional Review Board. This survey found that 100% of participants would vote for a Death with Dignity Act in Arizona if it were on a ballot measure. 76% of participants would aid a terminally-ill and eligible patient in physician-assisted suicide under some circumstances if it were legal in Arizona, and 24% of participants would never aid a patient in physician-assisted suicide. The concerns with physician-assisted suicide that were marked most important by Arizona healthcare workers were that hospice is a better option for the terminally ill and that physician-assisted suicide may be misused with disadvantaged persons. The most important factors of terminal illness that influence views of physician-assisted suicide marked by Arizona healthcare workers were the amount of pain the patient is expected to experience in the end of life, the amount of pain that can be relieved for the patient, the expected quality of life of the patient, and the patient's right to autonomy in healthcare. The significant differences between Oregon and Arizona in this study were the importance of expected mental decline of patient, patient's wishes that differ from family's, and hospice being a better option than suicide in influencing views of physician-assisted suicide. These differences could be deemed hurdles to Death with Dignity legislation in Arizona. This study recommended addressing those differences in public education and medical education and seeking Death with Dignity legislation via ballot measure.

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  • 2017-05

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The Many Faces of Corporate Social Responsibility

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Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is a fascinating and complex topic. There is consensus that companies both make a large impact on the world and have a responsibility beyond profits. The

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is a fascinating and complex topic. There is consensus that companies both make a large impact on the world and have a responsibility beyond profits. The challenge with this responsibility is that determining businesses' responsibility and measuring the impact remains unclear. Scholars most often point to the early to mid 1900s as its starting point and the increased economic growth and workers' unions occurring in the 1950s as one of the reasons for scholars paying more attention to the topic. This thesis project analyzes current examples of CSR from Starbucks and IBM. These companies have reputations for their positive CSR practices. Both companies' availability of information, the vast number of their CSR practices, and efforts to measure the impact set them apart. IBM and Starbucks stand out because of the sheer volume of CSR activities they have, and when examined closely, the mixed, primarily good, impact of these activities is revealed. Having a high number of CSR practices alone does not equate to doing CSR well. Instead, companies' CSR should be examined based on both the number of practices and their impact. Considering both of these metrics will help consumers, as well as other stakeholders, better evaluate the success or failure of CSR in a business.

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  • 2017-05

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A participatory Technology Assessment: Engaging ASU student's ideas about genome editing

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Advancements in science and technology, particularly in the field of genome editing, hold significant potential to change how future generations will treat disease and may fundamentally change what it means

Advancements in science and technology, particularly in the field of genome editing, hold significant potential to change how future generations will treat disease and may fundamentally change what it means to be human. There are concerns by scientists and non-scientists about how to explore the values and perceptions of the public regarding the implications of new technologies. Use of participatory Technology Assessment (pTA) has arisen as a type of interactive group discussion to disseminate information about technology and collect non-scientists' perceptions of the value, impact or usefulness of a technology and potential ethical issues or consequences to be considered. There is no one size fits all model of pTA; several are discussed in this paper, but there are similarities between them such as the structure of engagement or recruitment criteria. It is important to note a difference in public understanding of science and public engagement with science as it relates to the structure and execution of pTA. This study was undertaken to evaluate pTA as a tool to explore perceptions, values and opinions regarding a case study of CRISPR-Cas9, a tool for genome editing, among ASU Barrett undergraduate students.

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  • 2016-12

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Diagnosing Autism Spectrum Disorder: Implications for Research, Medicine, and Patients

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Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a lifelong neurodevelopmental disorder that is becoming increasingly common. Autism does not yet have a known etiology, nor a definitive diagnostic test, thus making diagnosis

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a lifelong neurodevelopmental disorder that is becoming increasingly common. Autism does not yet have a known etiology, nor a definitive diagnostic test, thus making diagnosis a difficult and rarely uniform task. Currently, ASD is behaviorally diagnosed based on criteria defined by the American Psychiatric Association in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). Recently, a change was made in the criteria from more lenient criteria in DSM-IV-TR, to more narrow criteria laid out by the DSM-V, which supersedes the DSM-IV-TR. This drastic change raised many questions and debates about which set of criteria are better. The more lenient criteria offers a more inclusive diagnosis giving greater access to therapies; while the narrow diagnostic criteria excludes some individuals, creating a more uniform diagnosis that's easier to use in research. This thesis analyzes the change in diagnostic criteria from the DSM-IV-TR to the DSM-V and the effects of these changes on the practices of diagnosis. In addition, it explores the implications of this change for the families of children with autism and for those involved in autism research, examining their respective opinions and interests pertaining to narrow verses broad diagnostic criteria. Building on this analysis, the thesis offers recommendations about diagnostic criteria should be set. It argues that the wellbeing of patients takes priority over the interests of researchers, and thus diagnosis should be done in a way that offers the best prognosis for all children who suffer from autistic symptoms.

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  • 2016-12

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Medicine Before the Flexner Report: How Sects-y is too Sects-y?

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While the transition from sectarian to allopathic medicine was almost entirely beneficial due to our perceived value in the type of evidence and transparency that science provides, key values within

While the transition from sectarian to allopathic medicine was almost entirely beneficial due to our perceived value in the type of evidence and transparency that science provides, key values within sectarian practice were lost in this transition. Attention to these values helps us better understand the role and treatment of patients in modern medicine. Modern scientific physicians have proven the inefficacy of sectarian treatments by scientific practices, but the efficacy of exact sectarian remedies may not have bearing on the importance of sectarian values. These values were: medical simplicity, harmlessness in treatment, independence from physicians and accessibility of treatment. A more in-depth analysis of sectarian values allows us to understand that while the values of allopathic medicine have become ubiquitous, it has not always been that way. It is time to consider the validity in the sectarian values we have abandoned; this analysis was one of many on medicine's imminent developmental horizon. This realization allows us to call into question the importance of our current practicing values, and the necessity that they continue to stand alone.

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  • 2017-05