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The Immortal Life ofHenrietta Lacks Written by Rebecca Skloot Creative response by: Kimberly Bradford
Two Sides to Every Story Scientist/Doctor The advances of modern medicine outweigh the rights of the patient Once a doctor takes your cells, and he creates something from them, it becomes his property and invention Patient A patient has a right to compensation for anything that comes from their body The knowledge of what is being done with their cells
Medicine & Science Researchers value the potential advances in science over the patient’s privacy and well-being. They not only took Henrietta's cells, but made many other cell lines without informing the patient, or giving them compensation “Mo”
“Mo” Cell Line John Moore sued his doctor David Golde for “deceiving him and using his body without consent” Supreme Court of California ruled, “When tissues are removed from your body, with or without consent, any claim you might have to owning them vanishes” This gave doctors the first opportunity to patent cell lines The court suggested all doctors “disclose any financial interests in patient tissues” even though no law technically required it
My Reaction I was surprised to find how slow the courts were to make law to protect the right’s of patient’s. It took a span of at least 30 years to begin making laws requiring doctors to get consent forms and disclose information to a patient. I know if someone took my cells and created something from them without my knowledge or permission, I would feel violated and scared of what else doctors can do.
The Lacks Family They were in the dark about the status of their relative’s cells. The fact that they were poor, and came from a history of slavery makes the circumstances look biased towards a specific race. Early in American history, black American’s were treated horribly in cases such as the Tuskegee study, and HeLa injections themselves.
My Reaction Throughout school I have learned about the civil rights movement and how African American's were treated. This book made it more real because by the end Henrietta seems so real. I felt the pain her family felt when they found out, and it makes my sense of well-being much more acute.
Importance of Responsible Journalism This novel shows how journalism can be good and bad. At first, the Lacks had no clue about the cells partly because of the journalists publishing the incorrect name. Once responsible journalists, such as the author of this book, helped them understand, they were more willing to share their story.
My Reaction As a student at UT, this book proves how important it is to use reliable sources and cite them all correctly. Everyone deserves credit for their work whether it be cells, writing, pictures, or anything else you create.
The Meaning of the Book as a Whole Medically, doctors should always disclose information to patients, but sometimes scientific advances outweigh the doctor-patient confidentiality. It is always important to cite sources and give credit where it is due. Family is always important, even after death Henrietta was important to her relatives.
Works Cited Google Images http://www.resourcesforlife.com/docs/item2528 Books Skloot, Rebecca. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. New York: Broadway Paperbacks, 2010. Song Redding, O. (1965). “Respect” (Recorded by Aretha Franklin). On “Aretha in Paris” (Record). United States : Stax Records