Meidcal ethics




Abortion is technically illegal in the UK unless it falls within the provisions of the 1964 abortion act. These are:

That an abortion shall be legal up to the 24th week of pregnancy if two independant doctors agree that:

a. Continuing the pregnancy and giving birth poses a greater risk to the health of the mother than a termation, or..

b. Continuing the pregnancy offers a greater risk to the health of any existing child than a termination

Or at any stage of the pregnancy if two doctors agree that:

a. Continuing the pregnancy means risking the life of the mother

b. Abortion in neccessary to prevent grave permanant injury to the mother's physical or mental health

c. There is a substantial risk that the child would suffer from serious physical or mental abnormalities

Some people feel this act goes too far, others feel it doesnt go far enough

Father has no legal right to object womans desicion

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Catholics and abortion

Catholic views on abortion

Abortion is absolutey wrong (even when it is the result of **** or the mother is very young)

May be permitted if it is to save the life of a mother

God decides whether or not a child should be born

A child is alive and ensouled from the moment of conception so to abort it = murder

All human life is sacred

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Other Chistian beliefs on abortion

Other Christians beliefs on abortion

Probably agree human life is sacred to God but may dissagree that a foetus is human from the moment of conception

May feel abortion treats life too cheaply or interfere's with Gods plans

May feel it is up to the individual and on the circumstance

Abortion may be acceptable if:

There is a risk of serious dissablitly

The mother is very young and/or the pregnancy was an accident

The pregnancy is a result of ****

A baby would put too much strain on the existing family

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Fertility treatment

Methods of fertility treatment

IVF -In Vitro Fertilisation (Eggs and sperm are mixed outside the body then implanted into the womb)

Artifical Insemination (Donated sperm is inserted into uterus)

Egg donation (Extraction of eggs from a donor that can then be used as part of the IVF process for another woman)

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Fertility treatment in the UK

Fertility treatment in the UK

Fertility treatments are allowed in the UK subject to the provisions of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act:

Frozen eggs, sperm or embryos can not be used without consent from both parties

Women may not be payed for the donation of eggs

Donors should remain anonymous unless the donation has been arranged between friends

Frozen embryos must be destroyed within a given time frame if they are not used

Couples seeking fertility treatment on the NHS must fit strict requirements of suitability although private treatment is avaliable to anyone who can afford it 

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Christians and Fertility Treatment

Christians and Fertility Treatment

The bible says childness is God's desicion, however the writers were unaware of the possibility of fertility treatment

Catholic beliefs on Fertility Treatment

God has a plan for everyone- If children are part of his plan for you, you will have them

Artifically creating children is interfering with God's role of creating life

The bible prohibits the spilling of seed (sperm) on the ground- sometimes interpreted as being against sperm donation

Since 'spare' embryos are created and then either frozen or destroyed this is endorsing murder

Using donated sperm or eggs can be seen as introducing a third person into a relationship

Protestant Christians may share some or all of these views or they may believe:

Fertility treatment can cure great unhappiness and is therefore the most loving way to behave

"Treat others just how you would wish to be treated"

Christians use these same arguments in relation to surrogacy and gentic engineering

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Genetic Engineering

Genetic Engineering

Includes cloning and the so called "designer babies"-Genetic make up of the child e.g. wanting the baby to have blue eyes ect both of which are illegal in the UK

Genetic reseach has been used to create the perfect genetic match to save another child's life -This is a form of stem cell treatment

Experimentation on stored embryos, eggs and sperm is forbidden by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act, this prohibitation includes cloning, stem cell research (without specific permission) and mixing of human and animal DNA

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Christians and Genetic Engineering

Christians and Genetic Engineering

A modern issue so many people (including Christians) are undecided about it

Due to the Sanctity of Life working with human embryos can potentially cause problems as a human embryo is still a human being, in the image of God and therefore sacred

Only God has the right to give and take life

God has a plan for all individuals

Christians may focous on the healing potential of such study and the removal of suffering from so many lives if it is sucsessful

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Animal Experimentation

Animals are used in scientific research for..

Testing drugs and other medical treatments

Studying behaviours

Studying responces to particular kinds of injury or illness

Genetic research

Pigs are now beginning to be bred with organs that can be transplanted into human beings- because of a shortage of human organs for donation

These uses for animals are controvertial because..

They may cause pain/mental distress to the animals

They prevent animals living their natural lives in a natural way

Treatments that work on animals may not work on humans

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Christianity and Animal Testing

Christianity and Animal Testing

Humans are God's most important creation, being made in his image

The rest of creation was given to the human race to rule and control

Animals do not have souls- not capable of a special relationship with God (unlike humans)

Most Christians would agree animals still deserve respect and have value since they are part of God's creation

Treating animals with deliberatly cruelty is a misuse of the power God gave to humanity

Most christian churches recognise that animal research is something necessary

The Catholic church emphasise that with so much human suffering in the world, exaggerated care and attention to animals is wrong

Majority of Christian views is that the use of animals is acceptable provided unnecessary suffering is avoided

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Qoutes: Abortion


"Before i formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as prophet to the nations"

"So in everything, do unto others what you would have them do unto you, for this sums up the law and the prophets"

"So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him"

"The earth is the Lord's and all that is in it. The world and those who live in it"

"The Lord gave and the Lord hath taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord"

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Qoutes: Fertility Treatment, Surrogacy and Embryol

Fertility Treatment, Surrogacy and Embryology

"Hannah had no children.. because the Lord had closed her womb"

"God blessed them and said to them be fruitful and increase in number, fill the earth and subdue it"

"Your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be"

"The lord God formed man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being"

"Do you not know your body is a temple to the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have recieved from God? You are no your own"

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Qoutes: Animal Experimentation

Animal Experimentation

"God blessed them and said to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it" "

"A good man takes care of his animals, but wicked men are cruel to theirs"

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Quotes: Suicide and Euthanasia

Suicide and Euthanasia

"Thou shalt not kill"

"Your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your books before one of them came to be"

"I tell you the truth, all the sins and blasphemies of men shal be forgiven them, but he who blasphemies against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven"

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Qoutes: Roles of Men and Women

 Roles of Men and Women

"Wives... be submissive to your husbands... Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives and treat them with respect as the weaker partner"

"Wives submit yourselves unto your own husbands as unto the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, even as Christ is head of the church"

"Their is neither... male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus"

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Qoutes: Marriage and Divorce


"What therefore God has joined together let no man put asunder"


"Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.. even so husbands should love their wives as being in a sense their own bodies"

"A man shall not leave his father and mother cleave unto his wife and they two shall become one flesh"

"It is not good that man should be alone; I will make a helpmeet for him"


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Qoutes: Sexual relationships

Sexual relationships

"I say unto you that whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultry with her already in his heart"

"Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind, it is abomination"

"Thou shalt not commit adultry"

"Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth; for thy love is better than wine"

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