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Community Medical Ethics Project presentation will delve into age-based health care rationing

Community Medical Ethics Project presentation will delve into age-based health care rationing Community Medical Ethics Project presentation will delve into age-based health care rationing

GREENVILLE, Pa.—The Community Medical Ethics Project will host a presentation on April 26 at Thiel College, a leading liberal arts college in northwestern Pennsylvania, with recognized bioethics expert Alex London, Ph.D., who will discuss if age should be a factor for rationing of health care.

London is Director of the Center for Ethics and Policy at Carnegie Mellon University. The event is free and open to all health care professionals and the public. The presentation is Wednesday, April 26 at the Lutheran Heritage Room of the Howard Miller Student Center. London will make presentations from 1-3 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. Complimentary shuttle service will be available to transport attendees between parking areas and the venue.

Both presentations will cover the same material and are approved for American Medical Association Physician’s Recognition Award Category 1 credits.

  • For more information or to register, call 724-983-7168. Registration is available at the door.

London’s talk is titled “Age: Should It Be A Basis For Rationing Health Care?” He is a noted medical ethics expert who has delivered 15 international invited talks. He has published 71 articles, has been quoted by national and regional media, and testified before a Presidential Commission on bioethical issues.

London has written extensively on problems in bioethics and ethical theory relating to uncertainty, risk, fairness, equality and justice. His papers have appeared in Mind, Science, The Lancet, PLoS Medicine, Statistics In Medicine and numerous other journals and collections. He is co-editor of “Ethical Issues in Modern Medicine,” one of the most widely used textbooks in medical ethics and recipient of the Elliott Dunlap Smith Award for Distinguished Teaching and Educational Service in the Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences at Carnegie Mellon University. Last year, London was appointed to the U.S. National Academies of Sciences Engineering and Medicine (formerly the Institute of Medicine) Committee on Clinical Trials. In October 2016, he addressed the ethical issues in marketing pharmaceuticals at the Emerging Health Systems Conference at Seton Hall Law School.

The Community Medical Ethics Project is a collaboration between UPMC Horizon, Thiel College, Holy Trinity Lutheran Church and St. Paul’s continuing care community. Its mission is to help people in the community better understand medical ethics issues so they can make better decisions involving their healthcare.

Since 2007, London has served as a member of the Ethics Working Group of the HIV Prevention Trials Network. He has testified before the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues and has been commissioned to write papers for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Institute of Medicine. He has served as an ethics expert in consultations with numerous national and international organizations including U.S. National Institutes of Health, the World Health Organization, the World Medical Association and the World Bank.

About Dr. London’s Presentation

Should Age be Used to Limit Health Care Spending?
Alex John London, Ph.D.
Professor of Philosophy and Director of the Center for Ethics and Policy
Carnegie Mellon University

There are approximately 45 million Americans age 65 or older—slightly more than 14 percent of the U.S. population. By 2060 this number is expected to double, such that about 1 in every 4 Americans will be in this age group.  Although senior citizens are currently a fraction of the population, they, nevertheless, account for over a third of healthcare-related spending. Per-person health care spending in the elderly is about three times that for working-age Americans and about five times the per-person spending for children. Government spending covers about 65 percent of medical expenses for seniors. As America ages, health care expenses are expected to grow accordingly. This talk will examine the strengths and weaknesses of ethical arguments, grounded in a “prudent insurance” ideal and the “fair innings” model of intergenerational justice, that have been offered for using age as a criterion for limiting health care spending.

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About Thiel College

Thiel College is a private liberal arts institution founded in the Lutheran tradition. Located in Greenville, Pa., the College offers 60 majors and minors, 25 varsity sports, and a 10:1 student-faculty ratio to more than 900 students. A dedicated faculty paired with dynamic research and internship opportunities produce numerous graduate school and job placements. Coeducational from its beginnings, the College remains committed to combining tradition with innovation as it celebrates 150 years.


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