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Post-Election: A Bioethics Agenda for a New Era

President-elect Obama has pledged to make health care reform a priority for his administration, and Senate leaders are moving forward with their own proposals. It is clear that many bioethical decisions that fall under the broad umbrella of health care reform will be made in the upcoming session of Congress. At The Hastings Center’s December 9, 2008 Garrison Seminar, Mary Crowley, director of public affairs and communication, and research scholars Josephine Johnston, Nancy Berlinger, and Erika Blacksher presented some of the health reform issues that may not be the most obvious, but could be the most compelling.

Audio from the bioethics seminar, held in the Center’s Robert S. Morison library, is available below. We invite you to join the conversation by posting your thoughts in the comments section.

Welcome & Introduction

Nancy Berlinger’s and Mary Crowley’s introductions

The Political Landscape and Health Care Reform

Mary Crowley discusses Health Care reform.

Mary Crowley outlines President-elect Obama’s campaign proposals, and the recent proposal by Sen. Baucus. She suggests that an understanding of underlying values such as liberty and justice is necessary for health care reform to succeed.

Stem Cell Research: Why is this still an issue?

Josephine Johnston discusses stem cells.

Noting that a reversal of Bush’s federal funding restriction on stem cell research is anticipated, Josephine Johnston says that issues surrounding the derivation of stem cell lines, oversight of stem cell research, and compensation of gamete and embryo donors will likely persist.

Chronic Disease and End of Life Care: A chance to get it right?

Nancy Berlinger discusses chronic disease.

Nancy Berlinger asks if there is sufficient momentum to get end of life care into health care reform. She suggests that a better understanding of the ways Americans die could help end of life care become a part of life.

Public Health: Will fixing health “care” make us healthy?

Erika Blacksher discusses public health.

Fixing health care certainly will help make us healthier, but cannot stand alone, says Erika Blacksher. Health behaviors and social characteristics are greater contributors to population health and must be considered in our quest for ethical, sustainable, and comprehensive health reform.

Published on: December 15, 2008
Published in: Bioethics, Health Care Reform & Policy

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