Posted by William Nunnelley on 2006-03-15

Samford University's Healthcare Ethics and Law Institute (HEAL) will hold its 2006 conference Friday, March 31, at Samford. The theme will be "Improving Professionalism in Health-Care Delivery: Is There a Role for Ethics Committees?"

Speakers will include Steven H. Miles, M.D., professor of medicine and professional ethics, University of Minnesota Medical School and Center for Bioethics; Gregory E. Pence, Ph.D., professor of philosophy, University of Alabama at Birmingham; and Robert A. Buerki, Ph.D., and Louis D. Vottero, M.S., coauthors of Ethical Responsibility in Pharmacy Practice. Buerki and Vottero are also registered pharmacists.

The speakers will receive Pellegrino Medals for their contributions to healthcare ethics. The medal is named for Edmund D. Pellegrino, the first recipient of a lifetime achievement award from the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities. Called the "father of the American bioethics movement," Pellegrino also received the first award bearing his name from the HEAL Institute in 2001.

The HEAL conference-sponsored by Samford's McWhorter School of Pharmacy-is designed to help health-care organizational ethics committee members better understand today's most pressing health-care ethics and law issues and problems. Registration is open to committee members, physicians, nurses, pharmacists, chaplains, administrators and others involved in end-of-life care for patients who lack decision-making capacity.

For registration information, contact Paula Polinski, McWhorter School of Pharmacy, Samford University at (205) 726-2820. Continuing education credit is available. The program will run from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. in Brock Forum at Samford.

Dr. Miles, author of The Hippocratic Oath and the Ethics of Medicine, will speak on "The Hippocratic Oath: What Is It All About, Anyway?" Dr. Pence, author of Classic Cases in Medical Ethics, will discuss "Thinking About Schizophrenia with Compassion and Professionalism." Dr. Buerki will talk about "The Conscience Clause in American Pharmacy." Dr. Vottero will speak on "Professionalism, Ethics and Care."

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.