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Conferences and Lectures

The Albert Gnaegi Center Center for Health Care Ethics at Saint Louis University sponsors two endowed lectures each year, along with a student research conference.

Annual Health Care Ethics Research Conference

The Health Care Ethics Research Conference is an annual opportunity for SLU undergraduate and graduate students to present research related to health care ethics to an interdisciplinary audience.

This conference is designed to foster advanced academic discourse in fields related to health care ethics, highlight research done by students, and increase awareness of ethical issues in science and medicine to the wider community.

This year's event will discuss “Emerging topics in Health Care Ethics” on Friday, March 2, 2018, following our Drummond Lecturer. For more information, contact

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Learn more about the 2018 Health Care Ethics Research Conference

Edward J. Drummond Lecture Series

The Edward J. Drummond Lecture Series was established in honor of the late Edward J. Drummond, S.J. A Jesuit and an alumnus, Drummond served as the first vice president for SLU’s Medical Center.

Drummond's dedication to his vocation and his vision for the medical center can be summed up in his words, spoken in 1964:

"This must be a place where learning continues and care is delivered in an atmosphere that remains personal in an increasingly technological society. We must be dedicated to scientific truth and committed to a tradition that sets medical knowledge and medical service in a significant relationship to God and our fellow men and women."

This year's lecture will be held in conjunction with the internal medicine grand rounds at noon Friday, March 2, in the Pitlyk Auditorium at the Learning Resources Center. Our guest lecturer will be Joseph J. Fins, M.D., M.A.C.P. He will be presenting "Disorders of Consciousness and Disability Rights: When Neuroscience Meets Neuroethics." 

Joseph J. Fins, M.D., M.A.C.P.

Fins is the E. William Davis Jr., M.D., Professor of Medical Ethics and chief of the Division of Medical Ethics at Weill Cornell Medical College. He is a tenured professor of medicine, professor of medical ethics in neurology, professor of health care policy and esearch and professor of medicine in psychiatry. 

He the founding chair of the ethics committee of New York-Presbyterian Weill Cornell Medical Center where he is an attending physician and director of medical ethics. A member of the adjunct faculty of Rockefeller University and senior attending physician at the Rockefeller University Hospital, he co-eirects the Consortium for the Advanced Study of Brain Injury (CASBI) at Weill Cornell and Rockefeller.

In 2014, he served as the Dwight H. Terry Visiting Scholar in Bioethics and visiting professor in the history of medicine at Yale. In 2015, he was appointed the Solomon Center Distinguished Scholar in Medicine, Bioethics and the Law at Yale Law School. 

Distinguished Lecturer Series

Carl Elliott
Carl Elliott, M.D., Ph.D.

The Distinguished Lecturer Series invites internationally established ethicists to lecture at Saint Louis University. The purpose of the series it to discuss major emerging issues in the field of health care ethics with faculty and doctoral students, as well as the larger University community.

This year's lecture will be held at 6 p.m. Monday, Oct. 2, in the Saint Louis Room in Busch Student Center. Our guest lecturer will be Carl Elliott M.D., Ph.D.  

Carl Elliott M.D., Ph.D., is professor in the Center for Bioethics at the University of Minnesota. He is the author or editor of seven books, including White Coat, Black Hat: Adventures on the Dark Side of Medicine (Beacon, 2010) and Better than Well: American Medicine Meets the American Dream (Norton, 2003).

His articles have appeared in The New YorkerThe Atlantic Monthly, The London Review of Books and Mother Jones, as well as The Lancet and The New England Journal of Medicine. He is a fellow of the Hastings Center, a former network fellow at the Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard University, a recipient of the Erikson Prize for Mental Health Media and a member of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey.   

Conference on Medicine and Religion

The annual Conference on Medicine and Religion will be held April 13-15 at the Union Station Hotel in St. Louis. This years conference theme is "Examining the Foundations of Medicine and Religion."

Jeffery Bishop
Jeffery Bishop, M.D., Ph.D.

Jeffrey Bishop, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Albert Gnaegi Center for Health Care Ethics, has been a part of the conference’s organizing board since the conference began. 

“We all think we know something about religion and we all think we know something about medicine; but do they go together," Bishop said. "It turns out that the relationship between medicine and religion has deep historical and conceptual roots.”

The conference is open to physicians, chaplains, clergy, psychologists, social workers, health care professionals, academics and the public. Early registration at a reduced rate is open until March 16. 

International Academy for Bioethical Inquiry (IABI) Summer Symposium


The Center for Health Care Ethics and IABI will host a bioethics symposium at Saint Louis University at Il Monastero Sanctuary from Monday, July 16, 2018 through Thursday, July 19, 2018.

Paper presentations from renowned bioethics scholars around the world will explore the ontological and theological dimensions of bioethics.

IABI seeks to do two things:

  1. Bring religion and faith commitments back to serious bioethical inquiry, and
  2. Provide a venue for philosophically and theologically sophisticated scholarship to be brought to bear on contemporary bioethics.

Registration for the 2018 symposium is $125 and this event is open to the public. Register for this event via SLU Marketplace.

Check back for details on the July 14-19, 2019, symposiums in Ireland.