April 23, 2010
Patent Policy and Innovation
This panel will focus on how patent law affects various industries differently. The pharmaceutical and high-tech industries offer perhaps the most vivid examples of this divergence. The panel will also discuss whether patent law currently is or should be technology specific. Finally, the panel will also explore which institutional actor is in the best position to craft substantive patent law to promote innovation policy. Moderated by Melissa Wasserman.
April 15, 2010
Moral Biology? What (if anything) can the Mind Sciences and Evolutionary Biology tell us about Morality and the Law?
This panel discussion examines how developments in evolutionary biology and the mind sciences should inform law, philosophy, and economics, focusing on subjects such as punishment, responsibility, racism, addiction, and cooperation. Participants include I. Glenn Cohen, Joshua Greene, William Fitzpatrick, Adina Roskies, Walter Sinnot-Armstrong, and Thomas Scanlon.
January 6, 2010
Developments and Implications of New Legislation on Follow-on Biologics
Peter Barton Hutt, Senior Counsel, Covington & Burling, LLP and Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School, and Bruce A. Leicher, Senior Vice President and General Counsel at Momenta Pharmaceuticals will discuss and debate emerging issues related to this topic.
November 5, 2009
Health Medical Prize Funds: an Alternative Reward Mechanism for Medical Innovation
(QuickTime Player) Patenting and other rewards that rely on protected markets to encourage research investment in medical technology do not always provide the right incentives needed to optimize public health. In recent years, a number of proposals have focused on replacing or supplementing the patent system and related incentives with a mechanism that rewards medical research based on its value to human health -- as opposed to its value in the marketplace. Prize funds are potential mechanisms to offer pharmaceutical innovators a supplementary reward based on the health impact of their products. This panel discussion examines various prize proposals and discusses potential interactions between prize funds and patenting and other market-based reward mechanisms in the context of health innovation.
Sponsored by the Harvard Journal for Law and Technology, and HLS Universities Allied for Essential Medicines
October 7, 2009
Health Law, HIV/AIDS & Disability Rights: A View from the White House (QuickTime Player) Jeff Crowley is a member of the Domestic Policy Council in the Obama administration and has been the Director of the Office of National AIDS Policy (ONAP) since February, 2009. His job is to coordinate the U.S. government's efforts regarding HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and care and to develop a national AIDS strategy. Previously, Mr. Crowley was a senior scholar and researcher at the Institute for Health Policy at Georgetown University where he focused on Medicare and Medicaid policy from 2000 to 2009. At this event, Mr. Crowley will speak about the Obama Administration's health care reform agenda, and other health, HIV and disability-related initiatives.
September 22, 2009
When Medical Care Compromises Financial Health (QuickTime Player) Universal health insurance may be on the horizon, but a growing body of empirical research has shown that, even for those who enjoy health insurance, medical crises can push families to the financial brink, causing them to load up credit cards, miss work, forgo additional care, lose their homes to foreclosures, and even declare bankruptcy. Our panel will explore these problems and debate potential solutions, including insurance regulation, paid family leave, and reforms to the tax code, the bankruptcy code and debtor-creditor laws.
February 27, 2009
Conflicts of Conscious in Health Care (QuickTime Player) Substantial recent debate has grown regarding new rules and policies concerning physician and other health care practitioner’s rights to refuse to perform legally permissible medical procedures on the grounds of moral objections. Panelists are Holly Fernandez Lynch, author of the newly released book Conflicts of Conscience in Health Care: An Institutional Compromise and former Petrie-Flom Academic Fellow, HLS Professor I. Glenn Cohen, and Professor Daniel Brock of Harvard University’s Program on Ethics and Health.
October 2, 2008
Health Care Policy 2008: A Debate on the Obama and McCain Proposals (RealPlayer) As healthcare promises to be a key issue in the current presidential election debates, the Center brings together key health policy advisors to the McCain and Obama campaigns to discuss the respective candidate’s proposals for reform.
September 24, 2008
Human Dignity and Bioethics (RealPlayer) With the advance of medical technologies and the increasing power over life and death that they afford, discussions of “human dignity” have begun to take a more central role in bioethics. How should we view this dignity discourse? Is “human dignity” a useful concept that leads to determinate answers on issues like stem cell research and care for the dying? Or, is it instead a concept prone to misuse, an empty vessel or a camouflage for unconvincing arguments and unarticulated biases? We’ll examine these questions in this debate, which will bring together speakers from four universities whose expertise spans the disciplines of philosophy, law, and theology and medicine. Among the participants will be the Chairman and a member of the President’s Council on Bioethics, the federal body charged with advising the U.S. President on bioethics issues, whose recent volume of essays on these issues has generated widespread public discussion..
April 22, 2008
The Ethics of Creating Human-Non-Human Chimeras & Transgenesis: Should We Modify Human Nature? (RealPlayer) It has been possible since the 1980s to transfer genes taken from one species to into another. In one famous experiment, French scientists created Alba, a rabbit with a jellyfish gene inserted to give her a fluorescent glow. Transgenesis when applied to humans has the potential to radically enhance human beings, to produce resistance to diseases, to enhance our physical capabilities or even to slow the ageing process. Opponents to transgenesis argue that this will lead us inevitably down a slippery slope that risks altering human nature irrevocably. In this lecture, Savulescu will argue that this need not be the case and in fact, the use of such technologies, by allowing us to enter a new stage of evolution, ‘evolution under reason’, can actually strengthen our humanity.
April 9, 2008
Federal Implications of Healthcare Reform (RealPlayer) Would the state governments or the federal government do a better job of implementing health reforms and administering resultant health systems? Does ERISA provide a barrier to state reforms? Do constitutional principles provide a barrier to federal reforms?
April 7, 2008
Should Criminal Law Be Reconsidered in Light of Advances in Neuroscience? (RealPlayer)
This event, held in an “Oxbridge” style debate format, brought together some of the world’s most prominent researchers in law, psychology and neuroscience to argue whether and to what extent the US criminal law should be revised in light of significant advances in neuroscience that enable a deeper understanding the human psyche, and cognitive or mental predispositions, whether genetically derived or resulting from environmental factors, toward aberrant behavior. Should and how should our greater understandings of human nature modify our considerations of attributing guilt and assigning punishment.
March 20, 2008
Setting Global Health Priorities: The Role of International Human Rights Law (RealPlayer) Debates around the United Nations Millennium Development Goals and other international initiatives have brought renewed attention to both the urgency and challenges of setting a limited number of global health priorities. The role that international human rights law does or might play in guiding priority-setting remains open to debate. This panel will explore both normative and empirical dimensions of this question from a variety of different perspectives.
November 28, 2007
Stem Cell Century: Law and Policy for a Breakthrough Technology (opens C-SPAN2 web page) The explosion of interest in stem cell research raises a raft of controversial policy questions: When should human embryos be used to create stem cells? Should cloning be outlawed? Should egg and tissue donors be paid? Should we allow scientists to patent stem cells? Is the government entitled to a portion of the revenue from stem cell technology created with public funds? How should the regulators and courts balance the competing goals of access to revolutionary treatments and protection of the public from unknown risks? “Stem Cell Century” addresses these and other critical issues of policy, ethics, and law.
September 7, 2007
Biological Manipulation (RealPlayer)
Webcast of the lecture given on the appointment of Petrie-Flom Center's faculty director, Professor Einer R. Elhauge to the Carroll and Milton Petrie Professorship of Law.
April 9, 2007
From Discovery to Delivery: The Impact of University/Biotech Licensing Agreements on Access to Medicines in the Developing World
Each year, 10 million people die because they did not have access to existing medicines. The high price of patented medicines is a major contributor to this problem, especially the developing world. Universities, dedicated to the public good, research and patent many of the most needed medicines but license their patent rights in exchange for royalties to pharmaceutical companies that develop drugs and block access to low-cost generic alternatives in the developing world. medicine. This panel discussion brought together noted scientists, university administrators, legal practitioners and and public health officials to debate the challenges and possible alternatives to university technology transfer practices.
March 19, 2007
Re-Engineering Human Biology: What Should be the Ethical and Legal Limits? (RealPlayer) Biotechnology today raises hopes for medical breakthroughs and human enhancements and fears about a brave new world of designer children and genetic manipulation. Should our new biotechnological powers be used only to cure disease, or also to enhance our muscles, minds, memories, and moods? Does our growing ability to choose the sex and other traits of our children enlarge human freedom or raise the specter of a new eugenics? In its first major conference, Harvard's Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics, in collaboration with the Harvard University Program on Ethics and Health, and the Ethics and Public Policy Program of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, with financial sponsorship from the Cammann Fund, gathered leading figures in law, bioethics, science, and philosophy to explore the legal and ethical implications of the new biotechnology.
April 5, 2006
Pandemics: Law, Ethics, and Governance (RealPlayer) Recent news about avian flu and the potential for disease to be spread through bioterrorism has raised concerns about how the world would respond to the next pandemic. What are the legal, ethical and governance issues surrounding vaccination, quarantine and other policies that governments might plan and implement in response?
March 14, 2006
Drugs, Law, and the Health Crisis in the Developing World (RealPlayer) Many of the nine million deaths that occur each year in developing countries from communicable diseases could be prevented if the legal system were adjusted first to increase incentives for the development of vaccines and drugs directed to those diseases and then to distribute those vaccines and drugs at affordable prices.
March 2, 2006
The Role of Human Rights in HIV Testing: Current Challenges and Opportunities (RealPlayer) Featuring Sofia Gruskin, one of the premier experts on the human rights, gender, and HIV/AIDS. As Director of the Program on International Health and Human Rights at the François-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights, and Associate Professor on Health and Human Rights at the Harvard School of Public Health, the emphasis of Professor Gruskin’s work is on the policy and practice implications of linking health to human rights, with particular attention to women, children, gender issues and vulnerable populations in the context of HIV/AIDS.
February 16, 2006
Uncharted Territories: Bioethics and Biotechnology in the Supreme Court (RealPlayer) The Justices' views on Roe v. Wade are subject to exhaustive scrutiny and speculation. But how would they rule on a parent's right to manipulate the genes of their embryonic offspring? The use of fMRI brain scans during intelligence interrogations? The privacy rights to data developed from genetic screening? The feasibility of such literally life-altering technologies will continue to develop at a rapid pace. When technologies of life become contentious and draw attempts at regulation, what lines might be drawn by the recently recomposed Roberts Court?
"Biotechnology today raises hopes for medical breakthroughs and human enhancements, but also fears about a brave new world of designer children and genetic manipulation. Should our new biotechnological powers be used only to cure disease, or also to enhance our muscles, minds, memories, and moods?"
Professor Michael Sandel
PFC Affiliated Faculty
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