Archive for April, 2016|Monthly archive page

New Book: Public Health Ethics: Cases Spanning the Globe

In Uncategorized on April 22, 2016 at 10:16 am

Dr. A.M. Viens co-authored two case studies with Maxwell Smith in the new book, Public Health Ethics: Cases Spanning the Globe (Springer), published this month.  One case study is on critical care triage in pandemics and the other case study is on mass evacuations for public health emergencies. This work is part of Dr. Viens’ on-going and larger research agenda on ethical and legal issues surrounding disasters and emergencies.

Dr. Drue H. Barrett, Lead of the Public Health Ethics Unit at the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, is the lead editor on the project. The book is available in hardback, as well as electronically as a free, open-access publication

Book synopsis: “This book highlights the ethical issues and dilemmas that arise in the practice of public health. It is also a tool to support instruction, debate, and dialogue regarding public health ethics… There are few practical training resources for public health practitioners, especially resources which include discussion of realistic cases which are likely to arise in the practice of public health. This work discusses these issues on a case to case basis and helps create awareness and understanding of the ethics of public health care. The main audience for the casebook is public health practitioners, including front-line workers, field epidemiology trainers and trainees, managers, planners, and decision makers who have an interest in learning about how to integrate ethical analysis into their day to day public health practice.”            

Health Research Authority Research Ethics Committees – Vacancies for Lay Members in Hampshire

In Uncategorized on April 22, 2016 at 9:55 am

The role of the Health Research Authority is to protect and promote the interests of patients and the public in health research, and to streamline the regulation of research.

The Health Research Authority is responsible for NHS Research Ethics Committees. Our RECs are managed through the Research Ethics Service (RES). Research Ethics Committees consist of up to 15 members from both clinical and non-clinical backgrounds. Our Committees review health and social research, check that people are provided with the information they need to help them decide whether they wish to take part, and provide an opinion as to whether the research is ethical.

We currently have vacancies for members of the public who are not healthcare professionals or who have recently retired from a health service background, and who are interested in thinking about issues from the perspective of a potential research participant and would like to develop knowledge of research ethics. HRA Research Ethics Committee members receive training in ethical review and have opportunities to debate challenging issues.

We are particularly seeking people from the Hampshire area with the following backgrounds:

 • Members of the general public

• Social care professionals (excluding social workers, who would be Lay)

• Sociologists

• Statisticians with no clinical trials experience

• Academic ethicists

• Lawyers

• Chaplains

• NHS administrative, technical and support staff (not involved in management of clinical trials)

 There are 68 RECs which meet across England. Positions are voluntary, but expenses are paid for attendance at REC meetings and training events, including travel and childcare costs if applicable. Committees meet on average for half a day per month, 10 times per year and you will need to be able to attend at least 6 meetings per year plus be available to participate in Sub-Committee business held by email correspondence between meetings.

 We have a positive approach to diversity and encourage applications from all sections of the community.

What people say about us:

 An Ethics Committee Member’s view

‘The interaction with sharp young minds, seeing that spark of understanding and spark of curiosity knowing you have helped shape that through engaging with and encouraging them, was particularly enjoyable’.

A Researcher’s view

‘I thought that the Committee had considered my application fairly, invested time in it, and raised useful comments regarding my study’.

 ‘The review from the Research Ethics Committee assured me that my project was ethically sound and gave me more confidence to approach NHS managers for their support’.

 ‘The questions raised by the REC contributed toward improving the proposal and we are very grateful for that’.

A Patient’s view

‘I am very pleased to have been part of something that has resulted in these drugs becoming licensed’.

An application pack is available to be downloaded from the HRA website:


Or you can contact Libby Watson, Deputy Regional Manager, at libby.watson1@nhs.net or on 02071048031 for further information. 

‘Womb transplants: Are they worth the risk?’ by Dr Natasha Hammond-Browning

In Uncategorized on April 19, 2016 at 10:00 pm

Dr Natasha Hammond-Browning has published a piece in Bionews on womb transplants in the US, and the concerns that these clinical trials raise. ‘Womb transplants: Are they worth the risk?’ Womb transplants – are they worth the risk?

Natasha is currently conducting research around womb transplants, surrogacy and artificial wombs.