Educational Opportunities

Educating healthcare professionals, healthcare students, students from non-healthcare disciplines interested in exploring the ethical dimensions of healthcare, and members of the community at large is a core part of the Center for Healthcare Ethics' mission. Such education serves not only to raise awareness of crucial ethical issues and considerations associated with healthcare practices, healthcare delivery systems, and broader societal dynamics that can shape the values linked to how health, illness and patient care are understood, but more importantly, it helps promote and enable morally appropriate and sensitive patient care.

The center offers a variety of courses, conference, lectures and other sessions geared for creating an educated community and citizenry. Below is a list of educational programs open to participants as indicated.

Overview of Ethics Noon Conference

Since 1997, the Center for Healthcare Ethics has proudly presented the Ethics Noon Conference, a monthly event open to all who work within, are affiliated with or receive care at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. The primary aim of these conferences is to raise the level of awareness and degree of understanding of fundamental as well as emerging issues and concerns in healthcare ethics. Covering a broad range of ethical considerations associated with healthcare practices, healthcare delivery, and the healthcare system, these Conferences always include time for audience participation and interaction.

Matching the range of ethical considerations and diversity of ethical perspectives that may fall under the rubric of healthcare ethics, speakers for Ethics Noon Conference come from a variety of backgrounds, disciplines, and practice setting - over the years, they have been not only physicians and nurses, philosophers and other academics from across the United States, but also authors, filmmakers, and poets whose insights also help expand our understanding of ethics as pertinent to healthcare.

Ethics Noon Conferences are held in Harvey Morse Auditorium, typically on the third Wednesday of the month (please see below for schedule). A light lunch is available on the day of the conference starting at 11:30 a.m. The session begins promptly at noon and ends at 1 p.m.

This monthly conference is open to all who work within, are affiliated with or receive care at Cedars-Sinai. The primary aim for these conferences is to raise awareness and understanding of emerging issues and concerns surrounding healthcare ethics.

Weinberger-Vermut Lecture in Genetics and Ethics
"Genetics Technology and the Potential for Re-Shaping the Meaning of Medical 'Caring' (for better or worse)"
Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2019 at Noon – 1 p.m.

Harvey Morse Auditorium
South Tower, Plaza Level

Despina Kakoudaki, Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Director
Department of Literature
American University, Washington, D.C.

Summarize how the story of Frankenstein still resonates today, 200 years after the initial publication, especially in terms of certain dystopian views of medical technology in general and genomic technologies in particular.

Describe how the biotechnological worries associated with the Frankenstein narrative may (unintentionally) re-shape how the public understands the meaning of "medical caring," and hence, by implication, come to value (or dis-value) genomic medicine.

Lunch will be available at 11:30 a.m.

Past Presenters at Ethics Noon Conference
  • January 15, 2020: TBD
  • February 19, 2020: TBD
  • March 18, 2020: TBD
  • April 15, 2020: TBD
  • May 20, 2020: TBD
  • June 17, 2020: TBD
  • Jan. 16, 2019: Anthony Back, MD, University of Washington—"What Communication Means to Being a Good Physician"
  • Feb. 20, 2019: D. Micah Hester, PhD, University of Arkansas—"(Non-)Sense and Sensibilities: What Might We Mean by the Patient’s ‘Best Interest'?"
  • March 20, 2019: Jennifer H. Molinsky, PhD, Harvard University—Topic: Housing for the elderly as relevant to health issues
  • April 17, 2019: David C. Blake, PhD, JD, Healthcare Ethics & Compliance Consultant—Topic: Uncertainty in clinical medicine and judgments
  • May 15, 2019: Kimberly A. Griffin, PhD, University of Maryland—Topic: Mentoring
  • June 19, 2019: Nancy J. Tomes, PhD, Stoney Brook University—"Nuisance or Necessity? Historical Perspectives on the 'Informed Patient'"
  • No Ethics Noon Conference in the months of July & August
  • September 18, 2019: Tia Powell, MD, Albert Einstein College of Medicine – “Dementia Reimagined: Ethics and Health Policy”
  • October 16, 2019: Clarence H. Braddock, III, MD, MPH, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA – "The Ethics of 'Keeping Up'"
  • November 20, 2019: Despina Kakoudaki, PhD, American University, Washington DC – "Genetics Technology and the Potential for Re-Shaping the Meaning of Medical 'Caring' (for better or worse)"
  • December 18, 2019: I. Glenn Cohen, JD, Harvard Law School
  • Jan. 17, 2018: Paul J. Ford, PhD, The Cleveland Clinic — "Brain Illnesses and Complicated Ethical Choices"
  • Feb. 21, 2018: Brian Mustanski, PhD, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine — "Ethical Issues in Sexual Health Research with Adolescents"
  • March 21, 2018: Emily Rapp Black, Author & Lucy Kalanithi, MD, Stanford University School of Medicine — "A Dialogue About Loss: When Breath Becomes Air"
  • April 25, 2018: Rabbi Avraham Steinberg MD, Hebrew University-Hadassah Medical School — "Combining Medicine and Jewish Law: A Personal Experience"
  • May 16, 2018: Jacalyn Duffin, MD, PhD, Queen’s University Faculty of Health Sciences — "Medical Miracles: Hematologist in the Vatican Archives"
  • June 20, 2018: CANCELLED
  • Sept. 12, 2018: Deepak Sarma, PhD, Case Western Reserve University — "The Karma and Dharma of Hindu Bioethics"
  • Oct. 3, 2018: Christine Porath, PhD, Georgetown University — "Mastering Civility"
  • Oct. 17, 2018: Gretchen A. Case, PhD, University of Utah School of Medicine —Topic: The art of health and healing
  • Nov. 15, 2018: Mildred Cho, PhD, Stanford University—"What’s in a Name? Why Metaphors Matter for Genomics"
  • Dec. 19, 2018: Mark G. Kuczewski, PhD, Loyola University—"Addressing Two Generations of Clinical Ethics Issues Involving Undocumented Patients"

Ethics Forum

This bimonthly session is open to all Cedars-Sinai staff and is held on the last Wednesday of the odd months from noon-1 p.m. The forum serves as an occasion for critical exploration of the breadth of ethical issues and dynamics associated with the daily practices of patient care. If you would like more information, please contact the center.


Ethics Seminar

This monthly session is open to all Cedars-Sinai staff and is an occasion for in-depth exploration of critical questions associated with healthcare ethics in an intimate, seminar-style classroom setting. Its focus is to foster critical reflection on the nature and meaning of core values and commitments entailed in healthcare practices.


ICU Ethics Roundtables

This biweekly, multidiciplinary forum addresses ethical and moral issues and concerns, critical skill sets, communication strategies, and challenging situations that emerge in the ICU. The content of each session reflects real-time experiences and issues that arise in caring for patients, families and our colleagues. The roundtable provides a space to raise questions, debrief from stressful events and learn from and with colleagues.


SICU Residents Clinical Ethics Conference

This bimonthly meeting is part of an educational series for house staff and fellows during their Surgical Intensive Care Unit rotation. The meeting is limited to the members mentioned above.


American Jewish University (AJU) Case Studies in Ethics

Exclusively for upper-level AJU students, this is a required undergraduate course in completing a major in the Department of Bioethics and Natural Science.


Ethics Resources & Library Holdings

Each year, the Center for Healthcare Ethics donates newly published and critically acclaimed books to the Medical Library. Their focus is on healthcare/professional ethics. A complete listing of these books may be found by going to the Medical Library's Catalogue page and using "ethics" as a keyword and selecting "Searching Everything."

In conjunction with a generous gift from Mrs. Lena Straus and additional support from the Medical Library, The Center for Healthcare Ethics is also proud to sponsor, The Bernard M. Straus, M.D., Healthcare Ethics Journal Collection. This on-line collection of premier healthcare ethics and humanities journals allows anyone with access to the Medical Library website to access current and past issues of the following 12 journals.

  • American Journal of Bioethics
  • Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics
  • Hasting Center Report
  • HEC Report
  • Journal of Clinical Ethics
  • Journal Of Law, Medicine, and Ethics
  • Journal of Medicine and Philosophy
  • Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal
  • Literature and Medicine
  • Medicine, Healthcare, and Philosophy
  • Perspectives in Biology and Medicine
  • Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics