Bioethics and Law

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A survey course covering issues related to the interaction between the emerging field of Bioethics and the legal system. These include issues related to human reproduction, death and dying, and utilization of resources in a managed care environment. Specific topics related to human procreation include the legal and medical aspects of medically assisted reproduction, prenatal testing, genetic counseling, childbirth, abortion and contraception. Specific topics related to death and dying include withdrawing and withholding life-sustaining medical treatment, advance directives, active euthanasia, assisted suicide, and medical decision-making regarding premature and disabled newborns. Specific topics related to utilization of resources in managed care include: the ethical obligations of a health plan physician; futile treatment; and a comparative perspective on health care rationing with a particular focus on the British National Health Service and the Canadian provincial health care plans. The course will include a review of relevant cases and statutes as well as the consideration of clinical case studies.


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