N108: Transition to the Registered Professional Nurse Role Study Guide • Pro-choice: People who are pro-choice believe that individuals have unlimited autonomy with respect to their own reproductive systems as long as they do not breach the autonomy of others. The pro-choice movement argues that in cases where human personhood cannot be proven, as in pregnancies prior to the point of viability, the government does not have the right to impede a woman's right to decide whether or not to continue a pregnancy. Organ Transplant Transplants can raise concerns over the fairness of distribution of organs and the autonomy of the donor. Healthcare providers must guard the rights of the individual to privacy. The provider should ensure that all the conditions for organ donation are met. Historically, the identity of an organ donor remained totally private. Recently, with the consent of the donor or the donor’s family, the recipients of organs have been able to contact and even meet the donor and/or donor’s family to express their gratitude. The provider should ensure that all conditions for organ donation are met and guard the right to privacy. Gene Therapy This refers to the alteration, replacement, or repair of genetic materials in the cell by synthetic means in order to eliminate genetic disorders in humans. Genetic engineering is the alteration, replacement, or repair of genetic material in the cell by synthetic means for the purpose of eliminating genetic disorders in humans. Stem cell research is controversial because stem cells often come from human embryos. Stem cells can develop into virtually any body tissue and may provide therapy for various chronic diseases. Because the embryos are destroyed, controversy over when life begins is an issue. Statutes regulate fetal tissue research and transplantation. Human Genome Project This project involved at least 18 countries in the international effort. The goal was to identify all 30,000 genes in human DNA, identify gene sequences, store the information in data banks, and transfer the information to the private sector. Some ethical issues around this project included ownership of the genetic material, confidentiality, use of genetics information by health insurance carriers, reproductive choices, and clinical problems based on the knowledge of genetics. End of Life Issues Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide Active or positive euthanasia refers to an action by a physician that shortens life expectancy or hastens the death of a patient. Passive or negative euthanasia occurs when extraordinary measures to halt decline and death through the natural course of events are not taken. The ANA recommends that the nurse should not participate in active euthanasia and assisted suicide. The withdrawal of “medical nutrition or hydration” can be done with the consent of the patient, close family member, or healthcare surrogate. The patient does have the right to choose what type and how much care that he or she receives.