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From Karen Ann Quinlan to Jahi McMath and Beyond: A Half-Century of End-of-Life Care Debates

November 21, 2019 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Clinical Ethics Grand Rounds

John C. Moskop, Ph.D.

Wallace and Mona Wu Chair in Biomedical Ethics, Professor of Internal Medicine, and Chair of the WFBMC Clinical Ethics Committee

This presentation will situate conflicts about end-of-life care within the broader context of the evolution of end-of-life care over the fifty-year history of American bioethics. The presentation will defend the following three bold claims:
1. End-of-life care options have undergone an almost total transformation over the past half century.
2. Moral controversies in end-of-life care played the leading role in launching the field of bioethics.
3. Moral controversies in end-of-life care remain the most visible, and some of most vexing, issues in bioethics today.
The presentation will begin with a comparison of available end-of-life care options today and fifty years ago. It will then provide a brief review of the course and current status of five prominent end-of-life-care debates in ethics and public policy in the United States, over abortion, “brain death,” “natural death,” “physician-assisted suicide,” and medical futility.

The presentation will revisit the five bold claims listed above to summarize the evidence for them. It will conclude with a look ahead at the future of the five prominent end-of-life care debates

Dr. Moskop is a bioethics scholar and teacher whose research interests include ethical issues in emergency medicine, advance directives, care for patients nearing the end of life, and the allocation of health care. He is chair the Clinical Ethics Committee at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center. His recent book Ethics and Health Care: An Introduction was published in 2016 by Cambridge University Press. He also serve on the Ethics Committee of the American College of Emergency Physicians and the Ethical and Judicial Affairs Committee of the North Carolina Medical Society.
Recent Publications:
Compensation models in emergency medicine: An ethical perspective. Martin DR, Moskop JC, Bookman K, Basford JB, Geiderman JM. Am J Emerg Med. 2019 Jul; :158372.

John C. Moskop, Ph.D.

Lunch will be provided

Jointly sponsored by the UNC Center for Bioethics and the UNC Hospital Ethics Committee, Clinical Ethics Grand Rounds offers an innovative and interactive forum for engaging with ethical, legal, and policy issues of particular salience to patient care within the hospital. There are no commercial support or conflicts of interest to report. Education certificates require attendance and completion of the evaluation.


November 21, 2019
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm


Brandy Elsenrath
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