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Robert M. Veatch to be Medical Ethics Institute Keynote Speaker

Robert M. Veatch, professor of medical ethics and the former director of the Kennedy Institute of Ethics at Georgetown University, will deliver the keynote address at the Washington and Lee University Medical Ethics Institute on Friday, March 14, at 4:30 p.m in Huntley Hall, room 221.

The title of Veatch’s talk, which is free and open to the public, is “Hippocratic, Religious, and Secular Medical Ethics: The Points of Conflict.”

He served as an ethics consultant in the preparation of the legal case of Karen Ann Quinlan, the woman whose parents won the right to forego life-support (1975-76) and testified in the case of Baby K, the anencephalic infant whose mother insisted on the right of access to ventilator support.

Veatch also holds appointments as professor of philosophy and adjunct professor in the Department of Community and Family Medicine at Georgetown Medical Center. He is the senior editor of the Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal and a former member of the editorial board of the Journal of the American Medical Association. He was formerly director of the research group on Death and Dying at the Hastings Center in New York.

Veatch is the author and co-author of over 35 books and over 60 journal articles, the latest of which are “Patient, Heal Thyself,” (New York University Press, 2008) and “Implied, Presumed, and Waived Consent” in the American Journal of Bioethics (2008).

He received a B.S. in pharmacy from Purdue University (1961), an M.S. in pharmacology from the University of California Medical Center, San Francisco (1962), and a Ph.D. concentrating in medical ethics from Harvard University in 1970.

The Medical Ethics Institute is sponsored by the W&L Society and the Professions Program in Ethics.