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SSM Official to Speak at Religion and Medicine Conference

Patrick McCruden, chief mission integration officer at SSM Health will speak as part of the Bander Center for Medical Business Ethics’s Conference on Medicine and Religion on Saturday, April 14, at St. Louis’s Union Station.

McCruden’s talk will be part of an examination of the question, “How can Catholic Health maintain its distinct identity, including a profound respect for human dignity and the drive for social justice in the health care realm, when so many secular disrupters seem to be finding efficiencies without such moral goods?”

Jason D. Keune, M.D., assistant professor of surgery and general business ethics, associate program director of general surgery, and executive director of the Bander Center, will join McCruden in considering the question.  

McCruden, serves as chief mission integration officer for SSM Health, a Catholic, not-for-profit health system serving the comprehensive health needs of communities across the Midwest. In his role, he leads the strategic integration of SSM Health’s mission, values, vision and Catholic identity into all aspects of the organization and the development and implementation of a full continuum of activities designed to spiritually, ethically and culturally enrich SSM Health employees and physicians.

He has been a part of Catholic health care for over 30 years, initially working in pastoral care.

As a certified chaplain, he spent fifteen years primarily as a chaplain and director of pastoral care before moving into the mission integration and bioethics field.

For the last 20 years, he worked for health systems in Iowa, Arkansas and Missouri. He developed the first hospital-based children’s advocacy center in the state of Arkansas and serves as its board chair, as well as numerous local and regional boards of directors. Nationally, McCruden serves on the board of the Theologian and Ethicist Advisory Council for the Catholic Health Association.

In addition to his work with SSM, he is an adjunct assistant professor of medical education at Stritch School of Medicine at Loyola University Chicago, teaching in the Bioethics program.

A native of New York, McCruden received his undergraduate education at New York University and the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. He continued his graduate education at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago and trained as a hospital chaplain at the University of Chicago hospitals and clinics. He received his bioethics education at Loyola University Chicago. He is also a permanent deacon in the Catholic Church.

The talk will take place as part of the conference at 6:15 p.m. in the Regency Ballroom of St. Louis Union Station on Saturday, April 14. For more information about the conference, visit it.