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Markkula Center for Applied Ethics


The Markkula Center for Applied Ethics explores ethical issues in biology.

What is Bioethics?

by Margaret McLean, senior scholar of the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics

Bioethics involves a reflective, careful examination of issues that arise in biology and medicine, such as end-of-life decision making, DIY biology, biohacking, genetic testing, and the new possibilities of gene editing. It spans a large range of activities that may occur in garages or in laboratories.

Ethics in Healthcare Blog: Perspectives from Healthcare Ethics Interns.
A woman assists an elderly woman walking in a hospital corridor.

A gap needs to be filled in end-of-life care with a unified broad advanced directive for Alzheimer's patients that continue to maintain autonomy.

A pregnant Black woman sitting with laptop and reading about pregnancy online. By AnnaStills_Adobe Stock

Telemedical abortion access provides the ability to take ownership of one’s life and body from the comfort of personal homes, while benefiting clinics and providers alike.

IVF cell and needle injecting, 3D CGI render with blue color, cell stung by a medical needle By Bruno R.B, Adobe Stock.

The advancements in stem cell technology have allowed for great progress in the field of regenerative medicine, however we must balance innovation with responsibility and ethical considerations.

Patient on operating table with IV connected to left hand. Photo by Olga Kononenko on Unsplash

Our currently unethical laws need to be reformed to allow equal access to medical aid in dying care for all and to allow physicians and scientists to develop a better, uniform protocol.

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Looking for an internship? Apply to be a Health Care Ethics Intern, or continue exceptional work as the Honzel Fellow.

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Commentary on Bioethics
A woman receiving a vaccine shot from a nurse

Vaccination and mask mandates will push us all to be our better selves—to protect ourselves and others from the health, economic, and social consequences of unchecked pandemic.

Two features of AI/ML in clinical decision making raise important ethical and legal questions about how to assign responsibility for medical decisions.

The debate over whether health care is a right or a privilege comes down to how much burden society is willing to accept in order to provide health care to those who lack it. There may be a compromise.

Catholic bishops in the United States are split about the morality of using a COVID-19 vaccine.

Bioethics Materials

Navigate here to Read Articles magazines and newspapers laying on a table

Browse curated bioethics pieces on subjects such as end-of-life care, clinical ethics, pandemics, and culturally competent care.

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Navigate here to Review Cases file folders being examined through a magnifying glass overlaid with the word

Dive deep into real-life examples of vulnerable patient populations, organ transplantation, and other topics in bioethics.

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Hear what our staff and fellows are saying about neurotechnology, current events, and more.

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Explore the in-depth guides our staff have organized to model Catholic health care policies, MRSA risk assessment ethics, and beyond.

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Health Disparities and COVID - 19

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the African American community and other marginalized groups have been disproportionately impacted by the negative effects of the pandemic in a number of ways. View 2020-21 Hackworth Fellow Amanda Liddell's project on the subject below.

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Culturally Competent Care

Many patients from non-majority ethnicities and/or cultures frequently experience misunderstanding, mistreatment, or marginalization in clinical health care settings. See our compiled resources for health care that is sensitive to the differing values and needs of cultural groups within our diverse society.

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End-of-Life Care with Alzheimer’s Disease

What ethical issues arise when terminal neurological diseases, such as Alzheimer's prevent individuals from making medical decisions? This material explores answers to such questions and ethical considerations for end-of-life care with Alzheimer's Disease.

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