The World Forum - April 21st, 2024

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The Era of Informed Consent is Over

 


n a significant blow to patient autonomy, informed consent has been quietly revoked just 77 years after it was codified in the Nuremberg Code.


On the 21st of December 2023, as we were frantically preparing for the festive season, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a final ruling to amend a provision of the 21st Century Cures Act. This allowed 


…an exception from the requirement to obtain informed consent when a clinical investigation poses no more than a minimal risk to the human subject…


This ruling went into effect on January 22nd, 2024, which means it’s already standard practice across America. 


This Act granted the National Institutes of Health (NIH) legal protection to pursue high-risk, novel vaccine research. A strong case could be made that these provisions capture all the necessary architecture required for much of the evil that transpired over the past four years.


Scholars of medical history understand that the concept of informed consent, something we all take for granted today, is a relatively new phenomenon codified in its modern understanding as one of the critical principles of the Nuremberg Code in 1947. It is inconceivable that just 77 years after Nuremberg, the door has once again opened for state-sanctioned medical experimentation on potentially uninformed and unwilling citizens.  


According to this amendment, the state alone, acting through the NIH, the FDA, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), will decide what is considered a “minimal risk” and, most concerning, will determine:


…appropriate safeguards to protect the rights, safety, and welfare of human subjects. 


Notice the term subjects, not patients, persons, individuals, or citizens…but subjects. In asymmetrical power relationships such as clinician/patient, it is understood that the passive subject will comply with the rulings and mandates of their medical masters. The use of the term subjects also serves to dehumanise. The dehumanisation of populations was a critical component of Nazi human experimentation and, as Hannah Arendt argued, is an essential step toward denying citizens “…the right to have rights.”  


https://brownstone.org/articles/the-era-of-informed-consent-is-over/

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