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Yale Bioethics

Summer 2011

2011 Lecturers
2011 Seminars
2011 Participants

2011 Lecturers

Jonathan Borak, Clinical Professor of Epidemiology & Public Health and Clinical Professor of Medicine, Yale School of Medicine
The Ethics of Risk Assessment

R. Douglas Bruce, Assistant Professor of Medicine (AIDS), Yale School of Medicine
Ethical Dilemmas in Research Where Drug Users Are Concerned

Margaret Drickamer, Professor of Medicine, Program in Geriatric Medicine, Yale School of Medicine
Decisional Capacity

Thomas Duffy, Professor of Medicine; Director, Program for Humanities in Medicine, Yale School of Medicine
Reflections on Portraits of an Illness

John Grim, Senior Lecturer and Research Scholar, Yale University; Co-Coordinator, Forum on Religion & Ecology
Native American Religions: Toward an Environmental Ethic

Michael K. Gusmano, Ph.D., Research Scholar, The Hastings Center
Using Comparative Effectiveness Research in the US and England

Jacob Hacker, Stanley Resor Professor of Political Science, Yale University
The Political Battle over the Future of American Health Care

John Hughes, Professor of Medicine, Yale School of Medicine
Society and Health Care: Obligations, Fairness, and Limits

Shelly Kagan, Professor of Philosophy, Yale University
Applied Ethics and the Distinction between Killing and Letting Die

Dan Kahan, Elizabeth K. Dollard Professor of Law, Yale University
Science Literacy, Cultural Conflict, & Climate Change

Paul Kirwin MD, Program Director, Geriatric Psychiatry Fellowship, Dept of Psychiatry, Yale School of Medicine
A View of Aging through Poetry

Aaron Klink, Chaplain and Bereavement Coordinator at Amedisys Hospice in Durham, North Carolina
Bioethics between Bagdhad and Bethesda: Psychiatric Ethics, Politics, and Post-Traumatic Stress

Diane Krause, Professor of Laboratory Medicine, Pathology and Cell Biology, Yale University with
Stephen Latham, Deputy Director, Yale Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics
Embryonic and adult stem cells and their potential clinical use

Robert Levine, Senior Scholar in Research Ethics, Interdisciplinary Bioethics Center; Professor of Internal Medicine, Lecturer in Pharmacology, Yale School of Medicine
Origins of the ethical norms and principles for research involving human subjects
AND
Ethics of placebo controls in research involving human subjects

Justin List, Resident in Internal Medicine, Yale School of Medicine                                                                 
Ethical issues in global health: Cancer as a case study about distribution of health goods  

Scott Long, Senior Physician, Connecticut Hospice; Associate Clinical Professor of Internal Medicine, Yale School of Medicine
Evolution of Hospice in the United States

Maurice Mahoney, Professor of Genetics, Pediatrics, and Obstetrics & Gynecology and Executive Chair, Yale University Institutional Review Boards, Yale School of Medicine                                  
Influencing ("Designing" "Choosing") Characteristics of Your Children When They Are Embryos or Fetuses

Mandisa Mbali, Postdoctoral Associate at the Section of the History of Medicine at the Yale School of Medicine                                                   
The Moral High Ground: South African AIDS Activism, Drug Companies and the Medicines Act Case, 1999--2001    

Mark Mercurio, Associate Professor of Pediatrics; Director, Pediatric Ethics Program, Yale School of Medicine
Ethical Issues in Extreme Prematurity

Jennifer Miller, Executive Director, Bioethics International                                              
Actual and Perceived Ethics and Trust Issues in Global Biomedical Research and Development

Tim Nelson, Professor of Molecular, Cellular & Developmental Biology, Yale University
Agricultural biotechnology: potential for synergy between traditional and biotech methods in agriculture and food production

Sherwin Nuland, Clinical Professor of Surgery Emeritus, Yale School of Medicine
The Goodness of the Physician: From Hippocrates to High-Tech

Wayne Pacelle, President and CEO, Humane Society of the United States
Animal Protection: A Universal Value and a Global Concern

Catherine Panter-Brick, Professor of Anthropology, Yale University
Ethics of Health Research in Conflict Zones

Pasquale Patrizio, Director, Yale Fertility Center, Yale School of Medicine
Postponement and Preservation of Fertility: Ethical and Social Implications  

Peter Rabinowitz, Associate Professor of Medicine, Director of Clinical Services, Yale Occupational and Environmental Medicine Program
One Health: Why human, animal, and environmental health professionals need to work together to save the planet

Aron Rose, Associate Clinical Professor, Yale School of Medicine Dept of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences and Associate Clinical Professor, Yale School of Nursing Graduate Entry Prespecialty in Nursing
The Ethics Of Overseas Surgical Volunteerism

Julie Rosenbaum, Assistant Professor, Dept of Internal Medicine, Primary Care Residency, Yale School of Medicine
Death Panels in American Health Care: Too Much, Too Soon? But of What?

Sally Satel, Resident Scholar, American Enterprise Institute; Lecturer, Psychiatry, Yale School of Medicine
Organ Donation and Organ Trafficking: Is Donor Compensation the Solution?

Frederick Simmons, Assistant Professor of Ethics, Yale Divinity School
The Nature, Sources, and Moral Significance of Human Dignity

David Smith, Director, Yale Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics
Introduction to Bioethics

Marie-Jo Thiel, Professor, University of Strasbourg (France); Director of the European Centre for the Study and Teaching of Ethics (CEERE), University of Strasbourg
Human Dignity: Intrinsic or Relative Value?

Mary Evelyn Tucker, Senior Lecturer and Research Scholar, Yale University; Co-Coordinator, Forum on Religion & Ecology
The Emerging Alliance of Religion and Ecology

Wendell Wallach, Scholar, Yale Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics
Navigating the Future: Moral Machines, Techno Sapiens, and the Singularity

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2011 Seminars

Basic Issues in Bioethics                                            
Instructor: David Smith, Director, Yale Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics

This seminar will cover some core issues in bioethics: some that have been present at the beginning and other that have recently emerged. These will include research on human subjects, new technologies for reproduction, problems in genetic counseling, getting and distributing organs in transplantation, care for the dying, and the just distribution of health care. Readings will be articles or book chapters available on a campus internet resource. Participants will be expected to make a short and informal comment on the reading at least every other meeting.

Living with Disability                                                            
Instructors: Moira O’Neill, PhD, Assistant Child Advocate, CT Office of the Child Advocate and Faith Vos Winkel, M.S.W., Assistant Child Advocate, CT Office of the Child Advocate

The social value of people with disabilities is often reflected in bioethical discussions ranging from birth to end of life decisions.  This seminar series will strive to understand what it means to live a life viewed as de-valued and misunderstood by society.   Through the use of select readings, video, lectures and personal accounts, students will examine a variety of topics including:  disability law and deinstitutionalization; the gullibility that characterizes developmental disability; complications of sexual expression when residing in a congregate setting; issues of dignity in the promotion of curative research; and perceptions of suffering in consideration of assisted suicide.

Purposeful Creativity in Life/Work and Ethics           
Instructor: Steven Dahlberg, Director, International Centre for Creativity and Imagination; and Adjunct Faculty, University of Connecticut

Creativity is a human urge that seeks and deserves expression. It is about imagination and the way we think and act. Creativity is a skill that can be developed and harnessed to help us think in new ways, imagine better solutions and see creative alternatives. In this series, we will explore what creativity is, how to apply it to improve problem solving and decision making in ethics, and how it helps us discover purpose and engage in meaningful expression in our life/work. Come and practice the paradoxical art of being playful and serious at the same time, while we apply creative thinking tools and processes to ethics, work and life.

Bioethical Issues in Children’s Rights                                Instructors: Faith Vos Winkel, M.S.W., Assistant Child Advocate, CT Office of the Child Advocate and Moira O’Neill, PhD, Assistant Child Advocate, CT Office of the Child Advocate

The evolution of public policy regarding the health and welfare of children has encountered tensions in the rights and responsibilities of children, their parents and the state.  This seminar series will consider the child’s perspective as students are asked to engage in discussions regarding the status of children, systems they collide with, and issues that impact their lives.  In the context of so-called rights, the discussion will explore child welfare, juvenile justice and education systems followed by sessions focusing on concerns of the day including medical decision making and response to bullying. 

Medical Ethical Debates in Popular Culture                 
Instructor: Adam Schecter, Coordinator for Systems, Compliance, and Education in the Human Research Protection Program at Yale

This course seeks to evaluate medical ethical issues from the perspective of modern popular culture. Many of the topics covered in other seminars this summer (including, but not limited to, general ethical principles, ethics in law, rights-based ethics, ethics at the end of life, research ethics, and ethics in film and literature) will be discussed in this class, but with the particular lens of their treatment within a pop culture reference.  This seminar is intended to be interactive: while students will be asked to read various selections from literature and academia in advance of the class, the ultimate purpose of the readings will be to provide a background from which to begin class discussion. To this end, selections from contemporary films and television programs will be shown in class in order to further stimulate the interactive exchange. The diversity of student backgrounds (including academic discipline) should prove useful as we consider the various intuitions expressed in class. Students will be asked to submit one final paper, the subject of which should speak to one of the topics discussed in class, and the remainder of the evaluation will rely on informed discussion in class. No prior medical ethical or philosophical background is required—just a general desire to read, watch, and discuss!

Conversations about Bioethics                    
Instructor: Philip Rubin, Chief Executive Officer, Haskins Laboratories; Professor Adjunct, Dept. of Surgery, Otolaryngology, Yale University School of Medicine

This seminar will focus on issues in the areas of research ethics, data privacy, technology and ethics, and the social and cultural contexts within which research is conducted. Philip Rubin, formerly Director of the Division of Behavioral and Cognitive Sciences at the NSF, is currently CEO of Haskins Laboratories, an adjunct professor in the Department of Surgery and Yale School of Medicine, and a research scientist. He used to chair the federal interagency group responsible for oversight of human subjects regulations, under the auspices of the Executive Office of the President. Rubin will engage in a conversation with the group on topics in these areas and include background information based on his experience as a researcher, research participant, regulator, and institutional official. Topics include a historical overview of research ethics and the regulatory landscape; a discussion of research in the trenches: a laboratory perspective; and issues related to technology and ethics, including data privacy, enhancing human performance, and emerging technologies from nanotech to neuroethics.

Bioethics in the Media                       
Instructor: Jeff Stryker, Freelance writer

What makes a good bioethics story?  Are there attributes besides those found in quality health care or science journalism?  What counts as “bioethics” and who qualifies as a “bioethicist” in popular media?  Who speaks for patients, the professions, the academy, the health care industry, the government, religious denominations and other stakeholders in bioethics debates?  We’ll consider these questions while sampling some past and current controversies in bioethics (with an emphasis on the biomedical).  We’ll take a critical look at the media coverage of suicide and the so-called Werter effect (does more reporting on suicide mean more suicides?).  We’ll look at the media’s role in creating diseases and marketing cures and examine the coverage of organ transplantation, multiple births and somatic treatments in psychiatry, such as electroconvulsive therapy and psychosurgery.   We’ll also examine the media role in the long-festering controversy over the putative link between vaccination and autism.  Approximately a third of class time will be devoted to discussing student work, offering participants a chance at writing for a non-professional audience.

Aging through the Ages                                                        
Instructor: Howard Spiro, M.D. Emeritus Professor of Medicine

In Greek or Roman times to be old was to reach 40, but the limits of human life have not changed very much since then.  In the past, only a few lucky folks lived into their 80s, but one of the reasons why there are so many old people now has to do with improved survival of the very young thanks to life-saving antibiotics and procedures. How people felt about aging, growing old really, in those times is little different from today, except that today everybody is worried about prolonged dying thanks to what doctors can do to keep the elderly alive. In this seminar we will take a quick jaunt through some views on aging in Greece, in Rome, in medieval times and in the Renaissance, ending up with observations from the 20th and 21st centuries. 

Bioethics & the Law                                                                                                   M/W 1-3 PM
Instructors: Steve Latham, Deputy Director, Yale Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics  

This seminar will examine the basic treatment by American law of some major issues in contemporary biomedical ethics. Readings will include standard legal materials such as cases and regulations, a number of quasi-legal sources such as government commission reports and institutional guidelines, and some academic articles. No familiarity with legal materials is assumed; indeed, this seminar is designed for students with no background in American law. For each of the topics listed below, the instructor will offer a very broad and necessarily cursory overview of the area, and then will focus seminar discussion on one or two sub-issues to be addressed in detail. While the focus will be American law, some comparative-law readings will be supplied in order to bring possible alternative approaches to light.

Topics: Basics of the US legal system; abortion; end-of-life care and aid-in-dying; assisted reproduction; stem-cell research; organ donation; research on human subjects; and health care reform.

Selected Topics in Animal Welfare and Veterinary Ethics                                     T/Th 1-3 PM   
Instructor: Susan Kopp, Affiliated Scholar, Yale Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics; Professor of Health Science, LaGuardia Community College (City University of New York)                           

This seminar series will focus on several key areas of veterinary medical ethics and animal welfare.  After a brief overview of the field of animal ethics and major animal welfare concerns, individual sessions will be theme - centered: the use of animals in biomedical research; current ethical dilemmas in veterinary medicine including animal euthanasia; ethical issues in food animal production and public health; the veterinarian – owner -- patient relationship; and the moral status of animals.  The format will be interactive with brief, session related readings provided in advance, in order to facilitate active group discussion.

Examining Reproductive Ethics                                                                                  M/W 3-5 PM
Instructor: Alexis Paton, Doctoral candidate in Sociology, Newcastle University

There are a variety of topics that capture bioethical interest these days, but none so widespread as that of reproduction. Reproductive ethics has always been one of the forefront issues discussed in bioethics, whether it be abortion, surrogacy, or in less obvious areas, such as stem cell research and cloning. Questions concerning the morality of treatments and procedures related to reproduction continue to be debated in classrooms and government alike.  As medicine advances it draws new technologies and new ethical dilemmas into the mix.  This seminar will focus on those bioethical issues that are primarily related to treatments and technologies that are designed to both help and hinder the reproductive process in humans. We will cover a wide variety of topics, starting with a seminal argument in bioethics: abortion.  From there we will discuss the use of assisted reproductive technologies, multiple births, and surrogacy.  We will also be looking at less direct forms of reproduction in the forms of stem cell research, cloning and the selling of sperm and eggs.  Finally we will look at some of the new reproductive medical fields that are developing, for example oncofertility, and discuss some of the issues that may arise from these new fields.  There will also be time set aside to discuss topics of interest not covered in the syllabus but that the interns may wish to cover.  Since this class is combining both science and philosophy we will be sure to cover the basics in both areas, where necessary, so no prior knowledge of reproduction, biology or philosophy is required.

Public Health Ethics
I nstructor:  Chalmers Clark, Adjunct Associate Professor in Philosophy, Union College, Participating Professor, Union Graduate College, Schenectady, NY

It should be clear that public health medicine focuses on populations more than on individuals.  “Let us be candid,” writes Bruce Jennings, “Public health is not a natural ally of individual liberty.” Similar claims might be made regarding the relation of public health and patients. We read in the AMA Code of Medical Ethics that the “paramount” focus of the medical profession is benefit to individual patients.  Indeed, the essence of this patient centered position is argued to signal a fiduciary bond, or public trust, that crucially supports the medical profession as such.  An overriding question thus regards the tension between benefit to individuals and population protections.  The problem to articulate is two-fold:  First, how can public health medicine be integrated into the medical profession as public trust?  And secondly, how can public health position itself in the basic structure of a free society and block structural tendencies to infringe civil liberties?  With these questions in the background of this seminar, we will examine the ethical implications of some major areas public health policy and practice.  The format will be interactive and each session will open with a brief presentation by the interns from our reading assignments.  Topics will include: an analytic framework for public health ethics, the ethics of mandatory vaccination, public trust and the duty to treat in pandemics, ethics of public health research, personal responsibility for health, and altered standards of care in public health emergencies.

Environmental Ethics    
Instructor: Kyra Busch, Masters Candidate, Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies

This seminar will explore the question of how we define our environment and form a relationship to the world around us. We will look at multiple frameworks of ecological understanding and the emerging fields of environmental ethics. The seminar is designed to compare alternative ways of thinking about and living in our environment and to examine how that informs our behavior. Sessions will emphasize participatory learning, with limited lectures and an emphasis on discussion of the day’s topics, essential questions, and short readings. Using New Haven as an example, we will partner with community organizations such as the Interfaith Reforestation Project, Solar Youth, Inc. and the School of Forestry and Environmental Studies’ Urban Resources Institute to participate in community tree-plantings.  These field visits will provide a contextualized opportunity to explore issues of environmental justice and ethics.

End of Life Issues                                                                         
Coordinator: Carol Pollard, Associate Director, Yale Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics
Instructors: Various

This seminar series develops themes involved in each speaker's particular areas of interest.  Some leaders of this seminar will be giving morning lectures to all the interns prior to giving more focused talks to seminar participants; therefore, some of the sessions will build upon these morning lectures.  Topics include: cultural dimensions of end-of-life issues; prognostication; what constitutes a "good death"; palliative sedation; so-called "death panels"; issues particular to infant deaths; and religious issues at end-of-life."

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2011 Participants

Hany Abdallah
Doctoral candidate in Medicine
University of Vermont

Therese Awada
Surgical intern; Master of Arts in Ethics candidate
General Hospital of Strasbourg;
European Center for the Study of Ethics, France

David Barr
Master of Arts candidate in Religion
Yale University

Betsy Campbell
Master of Education, 1993
Harvard University

Stephen Campbell
Doctoral candidate in Philosophy
University of Michigan

Lesley Chuang
Doctoral candidate in Law
University of Connecticut

Thomas Craig
Doctoral candidate in Medicine
Keele University, England

Christy Cummings, MD
Postdoctoral Fellow in Neonatology; Bioethics track
Yale University

Arthur Czora
Philosophy, German, and History
Justus-Liebig-Universitat Giessen, Germany

Jessie DeWeese
Philosophy and Religious Studies
Purdue University

Adrien Donneaud
Master of Arts in Ethics candidate
University of Strasbourg, France

Adeline Ducos
Joint Doctoral candidate in Health & Life Sciences;
Applied Philosophy & Ethics
Université Aix-Marseille 2;
Université de Sherbrooke, France

Craig Ford
Master of Arts in Religion candidate
Yale University

Agata Gawlik-Swatek
Clinical Research Specialist
Jagiellonian University Krakow, Poland

Kandace Geldmeier
Doctoral candidate in Religious Studies
Syracuse University

Elisabed Giorgadze, MD, PhD
Professor of Bioethics
Tbilisi State Medical University, Georgia

Anjali Hari
Biology
Virginia Commonwealth University

Kaitlin Hizny
Philosophy
Transylvania University

Omotinuke Tina Isinkaye
Doctoral candidate in Medicine
Keele University, England

Katherine Ann Jackson
Master of Arts in Religion candidate
Yale University

Erin Kampschmidt
Evolutionary Biology of the Human Species and Pre-Law
Columbia University

William Kowalsky
Philosophy
Harvard University

Sundar Layalu
Master of Arts candidate in Sociology and Anthropology
Tribhuvan University, Nepal

Zohar Lederman
Doctoral candidate in Medicine;
Bachelor of Arts candidate in Philosophy
Universita' degli studi di Pavia, Italy;
Open University of Israel

Simon Lemberger
Doctoral candidate in Medicine;
Master of Arts candidate in Ethics
Université de Strasbourg, France

Rebecca Linfield
Mathematics and Philosophy
Yale University

Tatiana dos Santos Marques
Master of Bioethics candidate
Lisbon School of Medicine, Portugal

Marcin Michalak
Doctoral candidate in Law
University of Gdansk, Poland

Alexandra Mogyoros
Doctoral candidate in Law
University of Ottawa, Canada

Nicholas Moore
Master of Public Health candidate
SUNY Upstate Medical University

Ana Morrón
Master of Arts candidate in Religious Studies
Yale University

Ebere Ndukwe
Doctoral candidate in Medicine
Hull York Medical School, England

Michelle Piperberg
Doctoral candidate in Philosophy
University of Barcelona, Spain

Taylor Purvis
Political Science
Yale University

Pranav Reddy
Political Science and Microbiology
The Ohio State University

Victoria Reines
Biology
Emory University

Nathaniel Sames
Philosophy
Transylvania University

Sherzel Smith
Public Health & Healthcare Policy, Chemistry
University of Richmond

Raafay Syed
Philosophy and Public Health Studies
The Johns Hopkins University

Maria Anna Taylor
Biology
St. Edward’s University

Emily Twaalfhoven
Philosophy
University of Massachusetts at Amherst

Graham Valenta
Master of Arts in Religion candidate
Yale University

Francesca Zanni
Doctor of Law, 2010
University of Bologna, Italy

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