The Two-Faced Angel: Do Phase I Clinical Trials Have a Place in Modern Hospice?
Ross, Daniel S.
Penn Bioethics Journal 2006; 2(2): 46-49
Increasingly, bioethicists have been exploring the possibility of making phase I clinical trials available to hospice patients. Phase I clinical trials are designed to test a drug's safety and dosage, not its effectiveness. Participants in these studies generally do not understand that the purpose of the investigation is not to benefit them, thus challenging the notion of informed consent. But furthermore, the idea that patients believe experimental drugs will help them is contrary to the principles of hospice. Also, the very nature of the research in phase I conflicts with hospice's methods. For these reasons, this paper finds that the two models must remain distinct.
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