Nuremberg lamentation: for the forgotten victims of medical science

William E Seidelman

British Medical Journal, BMJ
British Medical Journal

Fifty years after the Nuremberg medical trial there remain many unanswered questions about the role of the German medical profession during the Third Reich. Other than the question of human experimentation, important ethical challenges arising from medicine in Nazi Germany which have continuing relevance were not addressed at Nuremberg. The underlying moral question is that of the exercise of professional power and its impact on vulnerable people seeking medical care. Sensitisation to the obligations of professional power may be achieved by an annual commemoration and lament to the memory of the victims of medical abuse which would serve as a recurring reminder of the physician’s vulnerability and fallibility.

Seidelman WE. Nuremberg lamentation: for the forgotten victims of medical science. Br Med J. 1996 Dec 7;313(7070):1463-1467.

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