An NIH Panel's Early Warnings
Green, Harold P.
Hastings Center Report. 1984 Oct; 14(5): 13-15.
Green describes the work of the Artificial Heart Assessment Panel, an advisory body constituted in 1972 by the National Heart and Lung Institute (NHLI) and charged with assessing the social, ethical, and medical implications of a plutonium-powered, totally implantable artificial heart. The panel based its deliberations on what Green now considers to have been NHLI's unrealistically optimistic assessment of the state of artificial heart technology, but eventually recommended against use of the heart in humans because of radiation risks. In retrospect, the author questions the government's role in allocating enormous sums of money to the development of a medical technology from which few persons would benefit. (KIE abstract)
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