Bioethics Blogs

Making Decisions for Others – Surrogates & Unrepresented Patients (May 7-8, 2015)

Ethical dilemmas commonly arise in healthcare regarding patients who are unable to make their own medical decisions.  
  • Who is best positioned to speak for these patients, and what decisions should we allow them to make? 
  • What if the patient has no friends or close family members, or close relatives disagree on the best course of action? 
  • Should there be a limit on what parents can decide for minor children? 

Cases involving decisions by others are often the most difficult cases that health care providers confront.  Yet policies pertaining to such decisions are frequently problematic, and education for providers about these issues is rarely prioritized.

The UAMS Intensive Healthcare Ethics Workshop for 2015 aims to bring together an interdisciplinary group of scholars to share research and experiences about decision-making for others. The workshop is designed for only a limited number of participants in order to be highly interactive, and will include keynote speaker and small group sessions, as well as submitted papers and posters.   
Jessica Berg, JD, MPH
Interim Dean, Professor of Law and Biomedical Ethics, and Associate Director of the Law-Medicine Center
Case Western Reserve University
Douglas B. White, MD, MAS
UPMC Endowed Chair for Ethics in Critical Care Medicine and Director, Program on Ethics and Decision Making in Critical Illness
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
D. Micah Hester, PhD
Chief, Division of Medical Humanities, Clinical Ethicist
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and Arkansas Children’s Hospital

The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.