Ethical Issues in Pediatrics

BTHX 5110/BTHX 8110 | Ethical Issues in Pediatrics

Sept. 5 - Dec. 21

Fall 2023 Courses
2 Cr
| Thursdays, Noon - 1:40 p.m.
| In-person

Using real pediatric cases, we will examine some of the most pressing ethical issues faced by clinical teams, patients and families, and ethics consultants. Topics include decision-making for children at the end-of-life, care of extremely premature infants, conceptions of disability, and adolescents’ independence from their guardians in decision-making and confidentiality protections, research conducted with children, Child Protective Services in the lives of children & families, and prioritizing children for scarce resources in public health emergencies. Through robust classroom discussions, we will consider these complex issues from a diversity of perspectives. This course is intended for professional and academic disciplines working with children such as medicine, nursing, psychology, social work, law, public health, and education, as well as child development, anthropology, and philosophy.

About the Instructor:

Headshot of Dr. Jennifer Needle, MD, MPH, HEC-C

Jennifer Needle, MD, MPH, HEC-C, Associate Professor

Expertise: Advance Care Planning | Pediatrics | Palliative Care Clinical Ethics

Jennifer Needle, MD, MPH, HEC-C, is an Associate Professor in the Center for Bioethics and Department of Pediatrics at the University of Minnesota. She earned her MD from Howard University in Washington DC, and a Masters in Public Health in Epidemiology from Emory University Rollins School of Public Health. Dr. Needle completed her residency in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics and fellowship in Pediatric Critical Care at the University Hospitals of Cleveland/Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital in Cleveland, Ohio. She completed her fellowship in Biomedical Ethics at the Center for Ethics in Health Care at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, Oregon.

Dr. Needle joined the faculty at the University of Minnesota in 2013 after six years as an Assistant Professor for the Department of Pediatrics, Division of Critical Care, at Oregon Health & Science University. She is board certified by the American Board of Pediatrics in Critical Care and the American Board of Pediatrics. She has developed a national reputation as a leading early investigator in the field of pediatric palliative care and advance care planning.  She has been a PI or co-I on grants from the National Institutes of Health and the American Cancer Society studying Adolescent and Young Adult Advance Care Planning in Cancer and Bone Marrow Transplant. Her work has been published in Critical Care Medicine, Pediatric Critical Care MedicinePalliative Medicine, and The Journal of Clinical Ethics. Her current academic focus is on reducing health disparities in pediatric palliative care. She is collaborating with the SoLaHmo Partnership for Health and Wellness to utilize a community-based participatory research approach to understand barriers and facilitators to pediatric palliative care in the Somali, Latino/a/x, and Hmong communities. Dr. Needle serves as the co-chair of the University of Minnesota Medical Center Ethics Committee, and co-lead for the clinical ethics consultation service for MHealth Fairview system hospitals.