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the Department of Bioethics and Humanities
Welcome to the Department of Bioethics and Humanities. The primary strength of the department is its rich, talented, interdisciplinary nature, which is a function of the faculty. Capitalizing on this strength and expanding the visibility of the department has emerged as a key goal for us.
The Department provides academic education and professional training in bioethics and humanities through an MA in Bioethics; an undergraduate Minor in Bioethics and Humanities; curricula in clinical ethics and professionalism for medical students, residents, and fellows; and sponsored continuing education activities for practicing health care professionals.
The Department of Bioethics & Humanities is committed to excellence in teaching, scholarship, and community service. Integral to this commitment is promoting diversity and making our programs attractive to traditionally under-represented individuals.
Our faculty represent diverse scholarly disciplines, including medicine, genetics, philosophy, health services, religious studies, education, pathology, history, and other areas. We partner with faculty from the schools of medicine, law, nursing, pharmacy, public health, social work and the college of arts and sciences. Faculty publications explore a wide range of areas, including the ethical, legal and social implications of genetics and genomic research; community-based participatory research; social justice and access to health care; social inequalities in health and health disparities; medical error; and palliative and end of life care.
Our graduate students bring training and experience from a variety of fields, including medicine, law, nursing, social work, physician assistant studies, dentistry, and other areas.
We recommend Tom McCormick’s article “The Ethics for Doctors in Helping a Patient Die” in the Opinion pages of The New York Times.
Read about Adjunct Professor Doug Diekema’s perspective on childhood vaccination policy in Washington state in this article by Brian Donohue in the Health Sciences NewsBeat.
Faculty Wylie Burke, Denise Dudzinski, Nancy Jecker, Tom McCormick and adjuncts Mark Sullivan, Mark Tonelli, Ben Wilfond, and Doug Diekema have been featured in a series of artilces "Bioethics Q&A series: Facing today's dilemmas" by Brian Donohue in the Health Sciences NewsBeat.
Congratulations to Professor Wylie Burke on winning the 2014 UW Medicine Award for Excellence in Mentoring. The award, initially sponsored by UW Medicine's National Center for Excellence in Women's Health, recognizes the need for mentoring of women faculty by all faculty and will be presented by Dean Ramsey to Dr. Burke on June 5, 2015. Twenty-two mentees submitted letters of support in nominating Dr. Burke for this well-deserved award.
SOM Curriculum Renewal
The faculty in Bioethics & Humanities are pleased to be participating in the ongoing School of Medicine Curriculum Renewal process for the MD program. During the Visioning Phase, 2011-July 2012, our then Chair Wylie Burke chaired the Vision Committee which was tasked with defining the guiding principles for the renewal process. During the Steering Phase (October 2012 - April 2013), B&H faculty served on several committees: Dr. Burke chaired the Governance Committee and served on the Steering Committee, Erika Blacksher served on the Health Equity Committee, and Kelly Edwards chaired and Denise Dudzinski was a member of the Ethics and Professionalism Committee. During the current Design phase, Dr. Burke continues to Chair the Governance Committee and serve on the Steering Committee and Kelly Edwards serves on the newly formed Integrated Themes Committee. Denise Dudzinski now co-directs the Ethics and Professionalism curriculum design.
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Are you interested in receiving information about bioethics
events, lectures, discussions, and news of interest? Click here to subscribe to our bioethics listserv.
We are pleased to announce that Dean Ramsey appointed Denise Dudzinski, PhD, MTS, as the new Chair of the Department of Bioethics & Humanities. We offer congratuations to Denise and look forward to her leadership.
Bioethics Grand Rounds
SAVE the DATE - September 30, 2015
Our fall Bioethics Grand Rounds will be held on Wednesday, September 30 and will feature Lainie Ross, MD PhD. Dr. Ross is the Carolyn and Matthew Bucksbaum Professor of Clinical Medical Ethics as well as Professor of Pediatrics, Medicine and Surgery at the University of Chicago school of medicine. Additional details will be announced here and via our bioethics listserv as they become available.
Summer Seminar 2015
The Summer Seminar in Health Care Ethics is scheduled for the full week of August each year. The dates for 2015 will be August 3rd-7th.
Please visit our Summer Seminar page for more information.
Farewell to Susan Reynolds
With deep appreciation, Bioethics & Humanities faculty and staff bid a fond farewell to Susan Reynolds on June 26, 2015. Susan served as Administrator throughout Wylie Burke’s 14-year tenure as Chair and managed the department through its transition to our new Chair, Denise Dudzinski. We will miss Susan’s dedication, intelligence, integrity, and humor. We wish her all the best in her future endeavors.
Welcome Chi Do
While the search for a new Administrator continues, we are fortunate to have the help of Thaochi “Chi” Do as Interim Administrator. Chi is Assistant Director, Departmental Business Planning, in the Dean’s Office. She will be filling the big shoes Susan Reynolds left until a full-time replacement is hired. Chi is available in A204 from 9:00 – 1:00, Tuesday – Friday.
Have you seen the online American Medical Association's Journal of Ethics? It is a great resource for ethical issues, case studies, ethics polls, and podcasts.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization has launched a project titled Global Ethics Observatory. It is a world-wide network of databases in bioethics and in other areas of applied ethics including lists of experts in the field of ethics, ethics institutions, ethics teaching programs, and a database of legislation, guidelines and regulations relating to ethics.
Open Spaces: Views from the Northwest is a quarterly magazine for voices from the Northwest that speak with knowledge and insight to issues affecting people in every region. It is created in Seattle, Washington and Portland, Oregon. Open Spaces offers perceptive articles as well as thought provoking stories, essays and poetry on many subjects including medicine, politics, publishing, culture, law, science, music, business, art, education, health, sleep, food, travel and gardening.
"The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks"
Dr. Kelly Edwards, Dr. Malia Fullerton, and Sue Trinidad have developed a discussion guide for use with Rebecca Skloot's book,
"The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks". Click here to download the guide.