Archive for March, 2012|Monthly archive page

Who wants to be an expert bioethicist? Applications wanted

In 2012 on March 15, 2012 at 6:19 pm

The Department of Health is looking to recruit a chair and members to a new expert committee to provide advice on bioethics, the Emerging Science and Bioethics Advisory Committee (ESBAC).  It says that ESBAC will be the main UK advisory body on the wider implications of developments in bioscience and its impact for health when it is established as an expert committee on 1 May 2012. It will provide advice to UK health departments on emerging healthcare scientific developments and their ethical, legal, social and economic implications.

Under its Terms of Reference,

The purpose of ESBAC is to provide expert advice to support policy development and priority setting. The committee will operate in accordance with best practice for advisory committees with regard to openness, transparency, accessibility, timeliness and exchange of information. Work will include:
• horizon scanning to identify developments in health related biosciences and biotechnologies;
• analyse new and emerging health related biosciences and biotechnologies and provide advice on:
        o their likely impact on human health and healthcare;
        o their social, ethical, legal and economic implications;
• providing a forum for the consideration of issues that cut across the remit of more than one interest group, government department or UK country;
• detailed consideration of specific issues related to emerging health related biosciences and biotechnologies as requested.

Applications need to be in by noon on 4 April 2012. Forms are available at the link above.

The Committee is expected to provide a broad spectrum of expertise, not only in health related biosciences and biotechnology, but also in medical, social, ethical, legal, commercial and public communication issues. Members are sought to cover the following broad disciplinary categories: Social sciences and the Humanities,Law, Economics, Industry, Science in Society (media, journalism, public engagement) and Biosciences and Biotechnology. 



Across the Spectrum of Medical Law

In 2012 on March 9, 2012 at 9:53 am

Marking both the twentieth anniversary of the Medical Law Review, and the retirement (as Editor in Chief) of Professor Margaret Brazier, the latest issue of this journal explores some of her published work and its wider impact. The Foreword provided by Prof. Larry Gostein, begins:

“When I was young and Legal Director of MIND (now far too long ago), I travelled to the University of Manchester to meet two of the most remarkable people I have ever met. The first was a young scholar named Brenda Hoggett, who was working in my field of mental health law. Now Baroness Hale of Richmond, she is a leading intellectual force on the Supreme Court of the UK.

The other scholar was Margaret Brazier, who went on to found the modern field of medical law. During her career at the University of Manchester from 1971 until this day, Professor Brazier defined and clarified the hardest issues in medical law, established leading academic centres, and chaired major national policy committees. In the process, she has been awarded the most prestigious honours both within her field and from the country. She made a remarkable and enduring contribution to the academy through her leadership of the Medical Law Review. This issue is dedicated to Margaret Brazier to mark her retirement as Editor in Chief.

A journal issue in honour of Professor Margaret Brazier could just as easily have been devoted to her manifold contributions to the field of tort law. After all, her seminal works include both Street on Torts (Butterworths) and Clerk & Lindsell on Torts (Sweet & Maxwell)—just to give readers a flavour of the depth of Prof. Brazier’s impact on the legal academy. But for me, it was her leadership in the field of medical law that has been most remarkable. She was among a very small group of legal scholars in the world that demonstrated the remarkable interrelationships between law, ethics, and health. Medical law became a field in its own right that has deeply engaged researchers, students, and the public throughout the world.”

There is a strong Southampton/HEAL connection to Medical Law Review, as Prof. Hazel Biggs is now the joint Editor-in-Chief (together with Suzanne Ost, Lancaster University), and Prof. Jonathan Montgomery sits on the Editorial Board. Further, in this dedicated edition, both Jonathan Montgomery and John Coggon contribute papers marking Margot’s outstanding contribution to the field of Medical Law.