UN Accepts Global NeuroCare Statement

The United Nations ECOSOC accepted a statement by Dr. James C. Johnston on behalf of Global NeuroCare for presentation at the 55th Session of the Commission for Social Development 2017.  In that statement, Dr. Johnston highlights specific recommendations for developing and improving health care services in resource limited areas.  He also suggested appointment of a Special Rapporteur or Independent Expert with a thematic mandate of Global Health to examine, advise and publish relevant guidelines for the ethical promotion of North-South collaborative partnerships, especially in Africa.

This represents an extension of the recommendations Dr. James C. Johnston submitted for the UN ECOSOC High Level Political Forum on 27 July 2016.

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Global Health Programs – How to Improve

James C. Johnston, MD, JD recently published a written statement for the High Level Political Forum of the 2016 United Nations ECOSOC meeting.   This statement raised concerns that many of the global health programs at United States academic medical centers have focused on brief, self-centered medical missions to resource limited areas, which may cause significant harm to host nations.  Recommendations for improvement were provided.  A summary of this statement is available at the UN Documents Center online, and at Researchgate.

https://www.researchgate.net/profile/James_Johnston6/contributions

Neurology in Ethiopia: The First Decade

The Addis Ababa University Department of Neurology in Ethiopia recently celebrated the 10 year anniversary since inception of the neurology residency training program.  To date, 28 physicians have graduated and passed their board examinations to qualify as specialists in neurology.  Dr. James C. Johnston, serving as an honorary Professor of Neurology and External Examiner for the examinations recently commented:  “These dedicated physicians are excellent clinicians providing outstanding neurological care despite severe resource limitations.”

James C. Johnston, MD, JD is also founder of the non-profit organization GlobalNeuroCare.org which focuses on improving neurological care in developing nations.  GlobalNeuroCare has maintained Special Consultative Status with the United Nations ECOSOC since 2013.BlackLionHospital

Further discussion of cerebral palsy and electronic fetal monitoring

Neurologist and attorney Dr. James C. Johnston has published several articles in peer-reviewed journals discussing electronic fetal monitoring (EFM) and cerebral palsy.  In the 4 April 2016 Journal of Childhood and Developmental Disorders, Dr. James C. Johnston and Thomas P. Sartwelle discuss the myths behind EFM, outline the ethical dichotomy created by this scientifically flawed procedure, and propose a solution to change the clinical standard of care by linking EFM to the Daubert exclusionary evidence doctrine, thereby ending cerebral palsy-EFM litigation.  (See:  Thomas P. Sartwelle, BBA, LLB and James C. Johnston, MD, JD.  Cerebral Palsy and Electronic Fetal Monitoring:  Rearranging the Titanic’s Deck Chairs.   J Child and Dev Disord 2016; 2(2:5):1-10).

Journal Article Discusses Ethical Concerns

Neurologist and Attorney Dr. James C. Johnston co-authored a peer-reviewed article published in The Surgery Journal entitled Perpetuating Myths, Fables and Fairy Tales:  A Half Century of Electronic Fetal Monitoring.  (http://dx.doi.org/10.1055/s-0035-1567880).  Co-authors included Thomas P. Sartwelle, a Partner at Beirne, Maynard and Parsons, LLP in Houston, Texas, and Professor Berna Arda, Chair of Medical Ethics at University of Ankara. 
This article explores the reason that even today mothers are still treated with blatant medical paternalism, deprived of autonomy and informed consent, and subjected to real medical risks under the guise that electronic fetal monitoring is an essential safety device when in fact it is used almost solely to protect physicians and hospitals from cerebral palsy lawsuits.

 

Journal Article Highlights Concerns Regarding Electronic Fetal Monitoring

Neurologist and Attorney Dr. James C. Johnston recently co-authored an article with Thomas P. Sartwelle entitled “Neonatal Encephalopathy 2015:  Opportunity Lost and Words Unspoken.”  The peer-reviewed article was published in the Journal of Maternal Fetal and Neonatal Medicine, 2015, early on-line.

The authors consider why the 2014 Task Force Study on Neonatal Encephalopathy failed to address electronic fetal monitoring (EFM) and its 40 years of clinical futility, and ignored the ethical breaches EFM’s use compels physicians to commit daily.  The Task Force acknowledged EFMs impotence, concurring with the authors earlier paper in the Journal of Child Neurology (Sartwelle TP, Johnston JC.  Cerebral Palsy Litigation:  Change Course or Abandon Ship), and yet recommended continued EFM of all women in labor, without providing informed consent.   This paradox is explored by the authors in their latest article.