Center for Bioethics | Ethics Grand Rounds

Palliative Care Exceptionalism? A Broader Perspective on End of Life Care and Modern Medicine

Jochen Vollmann, MD, PhD

Palliative care is an innovative and growing field focusing on life-threatening illness and on the relief of suffering by means of early identification and impeccable assessment and treatment of pain and other problems, physical, psychosocial and spiritual. In this “holistic” approach palliative care differs from science based modern medicine and shows similarities to other “holistic” approaches to the patient as a subject as well as to pre-modern medicine.

Professor Vollmann discussed from his ongoing research palliative care exceptionalism and a broader perspective on end of life care and modern medicine and its’ consequences for future health care. 


Jochen Vollmann, MD, PhD, Professor, Medical Ethics, Director, Institute for Medical Ethics and History of Medicine, and President, Center for Medical Ethics, Ruhr University Bochum, Germany | Some of Professor Vollmann's research interests are: ethics and history of informed consent and capacity assessment, concept and empiricism of capacity assessment, end-of-life decision-making, brain death criteria in transplantation medicine, ethics in psychiatry, medical professionalism, clinical ethics committees and clinical ethics consultation.