OU, OUWB professors help tackle ethical questions at Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak

The Clinical Ethics Consultation Service team is led by (left) Mark Navin, Ph.D., professor and chair of Philosophy at OU, (right) Jason Wasserman, Ph.D., associate professor, and (not pictured) Abram Brummett, Ph.D., assistant professor — both from OUWB’s Department of Foundational Medical Studies.
The Clinical Ethics Consultation Service team is led by (left) Mark Navin, Ph.D., professor and chair of Philosophy at OU, (right) Jason Wasserman, Ph.D., associate professor, and (not pictured) Abram Brummett, Ph.D., assistant professor — both from OUWB’s Department of Foundational Medical Studies.

Anyone involved in moral disagreements or ethical uncertainties at Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak, can now tap the expertise of a team of bioethics educators from Oakland University and Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine.

The hospital announced in late May that the Clinical Ethics Consultation Service is available to any of its physicians, nurses, patients, and family members of patients — along with anyone else in need of an ethics consultation and involved in patient care.

The team is led by Jason Wasserman, Ph.D., associate professor, Abram Brummett, Ph.D., assistant professor — both from OUWB’s Department of Foundational Medical Studies — and Mark Navin, Ph.D., professor and chair of Philosophy at OU.

The primary aim is to provide assistance with common clinical ethics issues including, but not limited to, a patient’s welfare versus the patient’s right to make treatment decisions, extending the life of the patient versus ensuring comfort as the primary goal, and honoring family requests to withhold information from the patient versus the patient’s right to know.

It’s also another example of OUWB and OU students getting the benefit of learning from educators who can draw from real life.

“For me, I feel it makes me such a better instructor,” said Brummett. “We come up with models and ways to theorize clinical ethics, but reality constantly finds new ways to break our models.”

(Only partial stories are posted here with hopes to provide a brief overview and introduction to my most recent work. The full version of this story may be found on the OUWB website here.)

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