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Ethical Dilemmas in Health

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SW705, Section 001

From a beginning in efforts to protect human rights in biomedical research, the field of health-related ethics, sometimes called “bioethics” has grown rapidly. It now encompasses such major areas as equity of access to, and delivery of, health care services, and the impact of the rapid proliferation of technologies (e.g. genetic and advanced diagnostic testing, prenatal, mind-altering and life-prolonging treatments) on how human life is defined, and on health care decisions and quality of life. While many of these issues, and the dilemmas they create, focus on the rights and burdens of individuals and families, ethical dilemmas in health have increasingly far-reaching implications for communities and societies. These dilemmas pose challenges to social workers and other social service and health care practitioners, administrators, policy makers and social and health scientists. Issues that have traditionally been private concerns are increasingly played out in the public arena, with passionate constituencies and extensive, and often inflammatory, media attention. The key roles and importance of well-trained and practiced social workers and other health care providers, administrators, planners and policy makers, in assuring equitable treatment and protecting individuals, communities and societies, provide the central rationale for this course. Course participants will review and use ethics frameworks and codes from a variety of health-related disciplines for decision-making, both generally and as applied to specific dilemmas, using a case-study approach. Participants will discuss conflicts between professional ethics codes and federal, state and local laws, regulations and codes(e.g. penal, mental health).

Semester: Fall 2021
Instructor: Susan Radzilowski
U-M Class #: 35079
Program Type: Residential
Format: Online
Credits: 3 Credit Hours

Pathway Associations

Community Change
Interpersonal PracticeElective (Host)
Mgmt & Leadership
Policy & Political
Program Evaluation
Older AdultsElective
Children & Families

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