Bioethical Reflections on COVID-19: Year 2020 Archive
Category : COVID-19
Date : 31 Dec, 2020

 CMEL's members have joined various discussions on the issues in medical ethics and law arising from COVID-19, including events organized by colleagues in the field. They have also written on this subject. Click on the links below for more information.

Archive for the Year 2022: click here
Archive for the Year 2021: click here
Archive for the Year 2020: below

  1. Media Interview: "Anxiety clouds China’s rush to vaccinate parts of the world"

    In the Financial Times - 20 December 2020

    Dr Calvin Ho, a bioethicist, comments in an interview with the Financial Times on the regulatory and safety concerns over the Chinese vaccines, which are set to be exported to other countries. 

  2. Policy brief by the World Health Organization (WHO): "Emergency Use Designation of COVID-19 candidate vaccines: Ethical considerations for current and future COVID-19 placebo-controlled vaccine trials and trial unblinding", 18 December 2020. 

    Produced by a WHO ethics expert group, of which 
    Dr Calvin Ho is a member 

    Dr Calvin Ho also shared on the ethical and regulatory issues in the vaccine race (recordingslides) in a webinar on "International Law, Science and Technology in the Time of COVID-19" hosted by the Lauterpacht Centre for International Law of the University of Cambridge on 4 December 2020. 

  3. Short Editorial: "How the COVID-19 Pandemic Could Reshape Palliative Care Into High-Tech and High-Touch Care: An Ethics of Care Perspective" 

    Dr Calvin Ho  and Professor Chia-Chin Lin

    In Cancer Nursing (2020) 43(6) 429-430

  4. Short correspondence: "Solutions to COVID-19 data sharing"

    By Greg Fegan, Phaik Yeong Cheah and the Data Sharing Working Group, of which 
    Dr Calvin Ho is a member

    In The Lancet Digital Health (2020)

  5. Article: "Heralding the Digitalization of Life in Post-Pandemic East Asian Societies"

    In Journal of Bioethical Inquiry — Nov 2020

    Dr Calvin Ho
    , Dr Karel Caals & Dr Haihong Zhang

  6. Book chapter: “Hong Kong: The Healthcare Professions and the Outbreak”

    Dr Calvin Ho Ms Daisy Cheung 

    Published in Covid-19 in Asia, a book edited by Victor V. Ramraj, Oxford University Press (2020)

  7. Media Interview: 

    "Scholar raised concerns about restriction imposed on right to self-determination by compulsory testing, discussed effectiveness of measures and suggested considering a scheme which does not impose criminal liabilities" [in Chinese only]

    In Ming Pao - 2 November 2020

    In an interview with Ming Pao, a Hong Kong newspaper, 
    Dr Calvin Ho shared his view on compulsory COVID-19 testing schemes.

  8. Project to explore if the PubliCo platform for the study of COVID-19-related public perception is transferable to selected Asian contexts (including Hong Kong) 

    Dr Calvin Ho will collaborate with Prof Dr Nikola Biller-Andorno (Institute of Biomedical Ethics and History of Medicine, University of Zurich) and Prof Dr Renate Schubert (Singapore ETH Center) to explore if the PubliCo platform for the study of COVID-19-related public perception is transferable to selected Asian contexts (including Hong Kong) in a public health ethics project funded by ETH Zürich and the Swiss State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation

  9. Conference report: Dr Philip Beh on Collateral Damage of COVID-19 

    Dr Philip Beh spoke on the “Collateral Damage of COVID-19” on 20 Sep 2020 during the 7th Annual Catholic Bioethics Conference organized by the Holy Spirit Seminary College of Theology and Philosophy.

  10. Article: "COVID-19 Emergency Measures and the Impending Authoritarian Pandemic" 

    In Journal of Law and the Biosciences — Sep 2020

    Co-authored by 
    Dr Eric C. Ip 

  11. Article: "Inequities, Vulnerabilities and Ethics in the Time of COVID-19: Diverse Perspectives from the APRU Global Health Program" 

    In Journal of Global Health Science — Published online Sep 2020

    Co-authored by 
    Dr Calvin Ho 

  12. Webinar: “Ethics & COVID-19 Webinar Series: Regional Perspectives – East Asia” (Video

    Dr Calvin Ho was a guest panelist in this webinar held on 15 Sep 2020.

  13. Article: "COVID-19 Lockdowns: a Public Mental Health Ethics Perspective" 

    In Asian Bioethics Review — Aug 2020

    Ms Daisy Cheung & Dr Eric C. Ip 

  14. Article: "COVID-19 Emergency Measures are Hurting Democracy Globally"

    In American Journal of Public Health (AJPH)  — Sep 2020 issue

    Co-authored by 
    Dr Eric C. Ip

    In this AJPH editorial, the authors argue that as necessary as effective COVID-19 emergency measures are, governments around the world must never lose sight of the need that a proportionate balance ought to be struck between population health goals on the one hand, and “the fundamental rights and freedoms that are the lifeblood of transparent, accountable, and democratic government”, on the other.

  15. Media Presence:  "COVID-19 apps – Are there enough ethical safeguards?"

    In University World News —  4 Jul 2020

    Dr Calvin Ho shared his views on the privacy issues arising from and the ethical principles that should apply to the use of COVID-19 mobile apps for contact tracing, which is a form of mass surveillance.

  16. Article: "Hong Kong - the unprecedented promulgation of public health emergency regulations against the COVID-19 outbreak

    In Public Law — Jul 2020 issue

    Dr Eric C. Ip

    This commentary examines the unprecedented public health emergency regulations passed by Hong Kong in response to the COVID-19 pandemic under s.8 of the Prevention and Control of Disease Ordinance (Cap.599). It details the scope of the powers, their key features, such as a compulsory quarantine period for new arrivals, and the context in which they were made. And it reviews the constitutional principles available to prevent such measures from violating the rule of law.

    Full text accessible on Westlaw: Eric C. Ip, "Hong Kong - the unprecedented promulgation of public health emergency regulations against the COVID-19 outbreak" P.L. 2020, Jul, 580-582.

  17. Article: "Preparing for the coming transnational cancer crisis amid the COVID-19 pandemic"

    In Cancer Causes & Control  — 29 May 2020

    Co-authored by 
    Dr Eric C. Ip

    In this commentary, the authors call for preparation for a looming transnational cancer crisis triggered by extreme COVID-19 responses deployed around the world, as a matter of ethical and human rights urgency.

  18. Webinar: "APRU Global Health Working Group Webinar:  Bioethics and COVID-19"  (Video | Slides) - 20 May 2020

    Dr Calvin Ho presented on "Mass Surveillance & Privacy". His presentation starts at 1:01:02 of the video

    For an overview of the insights and takeaways from the various presentations in this cross-regional webinar, please click on the links below to feature articles on the event:

    "APRU Webinar on Bioethics and Covid-19 draws wide participation"

    "APRU Global Health Held an Insightful Webinar on Bioethics and COVID-19"

  19.  Webinar: "Public Law Responses to COVID-19: Lessons (or Cautions) from Taiwan, Singapore and Hong Kong" (Video) - 15 May 2020 

    Dr Calvin Ho & Ms Daisy Cheung shared about Hong Kong's responses to COVID-19 from a public law perspective. Their sharing starts at 23:21 of the

  20. Webinar: "Social Distance, Social Response: Solutions and Strategies for Coping with COVID-19" (Video) - 13 May 2020

    Ms Daisy Cheung & Dr Eric C. Ip presented on "COVID-19 Lockdowns: A Public Mental Health Ethics Perspective". Their presentation starts at 1:16:57 of the video.

  21. Article: "What are the obligations of the state? A public mental health ethics perspective on the Covid-19 lockdowns"

    On Journal of Medical Ethics (JME) Blog - 6 May 2020

    Ms Daisy Cheung & Dr Eric C. Ip 

  22. Webinar: "State and Professional Autonomy: Conflicting Rights and Obligations in the State-Profession Relationship" - 30 Apr 2020 

    In this webinar by Dr Calvin Ho & Ms Daisy Cheung, they presented on why professional autonomy of healthcare workers needs to be recognised and sustained, and how strike by health professions may be different and ethically justified. 

  23. Media Interview:
    "Who should be saved when ICU capacity is outstripped by demand?" [in Chinese only]
    "Putting in place guidelines for healthcare workers will reduce their litigation risk" [in Chinese only]

    In Ming Pao - 20 April 2020

    In an interview with Ming Pao, a Hong Kong newspaper, Ms Daisy Cheung shared her views on rationing intensive-care resources amid COVID-19.

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