Wednesday, January 24, 2018
Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 390 – Part I.
(Youcat answer) Scientific, psychological, or medical experiments on a live human subject are allowed only when the results that can be expected are important for human well-being and cannot be obtained otherwise. Everything, however, must take place with the free and informed consent of the subject in question.
A deepening through CCC
(CCC 2292) Scientific, medical, or psychological experiments on human individuals or groups can contribute to healing the sick and the advancement of public health.
Reflecting and meditating
(Youcat comment) Moreover, the experiments must not be disproportionately risky. To make human beings the subjects of research against their will is a crime. The fate of the Polish resistance fighter Dr. Wanda Poltawska, a close confidant of Pope John Paul II, reminds us what was at stake then and still is now. During the Nazi period, Wanda Poltawska was a victim of criminal human experiments in the Ravensbrück concentration camp. Later Dr. Poltawska, a psychiatrist, advocated a reform of medical ethics and was among the founding members of the Pontifical Academy for Life.
(CCC 2293) Basic scientific research, as well as applied research, is a significant expression of man's dominion over creation. Science and technology are precious resources when placed at the service of man and promote his integral development for the benefit of all. By themselves however they cannot disclose the meaning of existence and of human progress. Science and technology are ordered to man, from whom they take their origin and development; hence they find in the person and in his moral values both evidence of their purpose and awareness of their limits.
(This question: Is it permissible to experiment on a live human being? is continued)