Religious Attitudes to Matters of Life (Medical Ethics)

Within this topic candidates should be aware of religious beliefs and teachings concerning the value of life, the importance of health and healing and who is responsible for life. They should be aware of the religious and ethical issues raised by new medical technologies and for the ways in which people respond to situations within this area and in particular to the following topics:

  • the concept of the sanctity of life in relation to medical research and practice in the areas of:
  • human genetic engineering, including designer babies, saviour siblings,
  • embryology,
  • cloning,
  • stem cell (therapeutic) cloning,
  • transplant surgery,
  • blood transfusions,
  • experiments on humans;
  • the desire to have children and the ways in which this can be fulfilled through:
  • fertility treatments such as in vitro fertilisation (IVF),
  • artificial insemination by donor (AID or DI),
  • artificial insemination by husband (AIH),
  • surrogacy;
  • the implications of artificial methods of reproduction for those who take part and for the children produced.
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