Wednesday, August 25, 2004
Medical Ethics Failures at Abu Ghraib Prison
Dr. Steven Miles, Professor of Medicine and Ethics at the University of Minnesota, appeared on CSPAN's Washington Journal this morning (Wednesday, 8/25/04) to discuss the actions of medical personnel at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.
He has authored an article on the subject in which he documents the failure of medical personnel to report the abuses and injuries. Such behavior is at odds with the ethical standards of their profession. Even death certificates were falsified.
It had not occurred to me before that doctors and nurses responsible for the health of prisoners at the facility could not have avoided seeing the results of the mistreatment and would have provided care for injuries, such as suturing and dressing wounds.
It seems incredible that the low-level enlisted men and women accused of independently devising and carrying out such behavior would have been confident that they could conceal the evidence from their superiors. The idea that they could have makes no sense. They should be punished for what they did, but they should not make the trip alone. This affair may still be far from finished.
Dr. Miles' article: