Berman Institute Monthly Newsletter – March 2020


2nd Annual Stavros Niarchos Foundation Bioethics Academy: Now Accepting Applications
This year’s course will focus on Ethics in Clinical Research. The SNFBA is co-directed by Prof. Jeffrey Kahn, the Andreas C. Dracopoulos Director of the Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics, and Prof. Effy Vayena, Head of the Health Ethics and Policy Lab, ETH at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich. Deadline for submissions is March 31, 2020 or until 50-person capacity has been reached.

The HIV Prevention Trials Network has released updated ethics guidance for HIV prevention research. Our Dr. Jeremy Sugarman, MD, MPH, MA served as the chair of the HPTN Ethics Working Group, and led the revision of the guidance to reflect the highest scientific and ethical standards.

Upcoming Events

March 9, 12:00 – 1:00 pm
Seminar: Moral Distress: A Time for Hope?
Alisa Carse, PhD
Location: Hampton House, Room B14B

March 17, 12:00 – 1:15 pm
Ethics for Lunch: A Bridge to Nowhere: The Ethical Challenges Surrounding Decisions for ECMO Initiation and Withdrawal
Moderator: Brandi Braud Scully, MD, MS
NOTE New Location: Patz Lecture Hall, Wilmer Eye Institute, Johns Hopkins Hospital. Lunch will be provided.

NOTE: The seminar scheduled for March 18, “Immunization Policies: Freeriding & Fairness,” has been postponed.

The screening of “Unlocking the Cage,” scheduled for March 18 as part of our 25th Anniversary film series, has also been postponed.

March 23, 12:00 – 1:15 pm
Seminar: Can Agriculture Save the Planet Before It Destroys It?
Jack A. Bobo
Location: Feinstone Hall, Bloomberg School of Public Health. Lunch will be provided.


Drug Shortages: The View Across an OceanThe Oncologist
Authors: Andrew Shuman, Yoram Unguru

Addiction and the SelfNoûs
Author: Hanna Pickard

Respect women, promote health and reduce stigma: ethical arguments for universal hepatitis C screening in pregnancyBMJ Medical Ethics
Authors: Marielle S. GrossAlexandra R. Ruth, Sonja A. Rasmussen

Patient Selection After Mandatory Bundled Payments for Hip and Knee Replacement: Limited Evidence of Lemon-Dropping or Cherry-PickingThe Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery 
Authors: Casey Jo Humbyrd, Shannon S. Wu, Antonio J. Trujillo, Mariana P. Socal, Gerard F. Anderson

Foster care youth and the development of autonomyInternational Review of Psychiatry
Author: Shannon Barnett

Ethics of HIV and hepatitis B cure research, Current Opinion in HIV and AIDS
Author: Jeremy Sugarman

Experimental Philosophical Bioethics,  AJOB Empirical Bioethics
Authors: Brian D. Earp, Joanna Demaree-Cotton, Michael Dunn, Vilius Dranseika, Jim A. C. Everett, Adam Feltz, Gail Geller, Ivar R. Hannikainen, Lynn A. Jansen, Joshua Knobe, Julia Kolak, Stephen Latham, Adam Lerner, Joshua May, Mark Mercurio, Emilian Mihailov, David Rodríguez-Arias, Blanca Rodríguez López, Julian Savulescu, Mark Sheehan, Nina Strohminger, Jeremy Sugarman, Kathryn Tabb & Kevin Tobia

The utilisation of wild foods in Mediterranean Tunisia: commentary on the identification and frequency of consumption of wild edible plants over a year in central Tunisia: a mixed-methods approach (Dop et al., n.d.)Public Health Nutrition
Author: Jessica Fanzo

Virtue Ethics in a Value-Driven WorldClinical Orthopaedics and Related Research
Author: Casey Jo Humbyrd

BI In the News

Several of our faculty have been called upon by the popular media to comment on the current coronavirus outbreak.

Jeffrey Kahn, PhD, MPH, was a featured expert in Global Health Now in their Q&A article about the outbreak.

Professor Kahn was also featured on WYPR’s Midday with Tom Hall to discuss ethical dilemmas faced in an epidemic.

Carleigh Krubiner, PhD, Ruth Faden, PhD, MPH, and Ruth Karron, MD, MPH—principal investigators of PREVENT—authored a piece in STAT: In the race for coronavirus vaccines, don’t leave pregnant women behind. The op-ed was also published in The Boston Globe.

Dr. Karron also commented in The New York Times on What Pregnant Women Should Know About Coronavirus.

Professor Faden penned an op-ed in The Baltimore Sun highlighting the justice issues that will arise if schools are closed in response to the coronavirus epidemic. She highlights additional issues in an op-ed in Education Week.

Mario Macis, PhD, served on a panel discussing the economic consequences of the outbreak at the Carey School of Business.

Other media coverage:

The Journal of Health Care Law & Policy dedicated a special issue to honor Karen Rothenberg and her extraordinary and ongoing contributions as a scholar and leader in health law and policy.

Marielle Gross wrote for Johns Hopkins Medicine Magazine: Loss Compounded; should we reexamine policy advising women living with HIV against breastfeeding?

Dr. Gross also wrote for the Journal of Medical Ethics blog: A bird in the hand or two in the bush? On ethics of HCV screening in pregnancy and for STAT: Federated learning: collaboration without compromise for health care research.

Jessica Fanzo, PhD, wrote for Bloomberg Public Health Magazine: Inequity in Food Systems Drives Both Hunger and Obesity.

Cynda Rushton, PhD, RN, FAAN, was a featured expert in a special issue of Team Care Connections magazine on Moral Injury.

Professor Rushton also co-wrote an article for My American Nurse on the recent findings of the National Academies report on clinician burnout.

MBE student Anna Levin was featured in an article in The Wall Street Journal on unexpected results of home DNA tests.

Mario Macis, PhD, was quoted in The Economist in an article on “Kidney Failure:  A quirk in the law means that America’s kidney shortage costs taxpayers.”

MBE student Brandi Scully wrote a blog post for Women in Thoracic Surgery titled “When Gender Bias in Surgery is Explicit.”


April 26
New York, NY
Brandi Scully, MD, will give a talk titled “Ethics of Implicit Bias” at the American Association for Thoracic Surgery’s 100th annual meeting.

April 2-3
Houston, TX
Jeffrey Kahn, PhD, MPH, will participate in a work group at Baylor College of Medicine’s Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy on the Governance of Human Genome Editing Policies.

March 27
Baltimore, MD
Yoram Unguru, MD, MS, MA, will give Pediatric Grand Rounds at St. Agnes Hospital on chemotherapy shortages and supportive care agents.

Dr. Unguru will also speak on these subjects in a webinar for the American Society of Pediatric Hematology Oncology Nurses.

March 2
Washington, DC
Jeffrey Kahn, PhD, MPH, was invited to present “Do New Tools Need new Ethics? The Challenge of Governance for Gene Editing in Humans” at Covington & Burling, LLP.