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Electives - Humanities and Ethics in Medicine

Reproductive Ethics & Law (aka: Medicine, Law & Ethics)

Elective Number: (Oasis E18w) 3524

Rotation Supervisor: Lois Shepherd, JD

Designated Signer: Carrie Gumm, 5th floor Barringer room 5364

Duration: 2 weeks

Available: R12a (2/4-2/16) for Class of 2019

Report to: Center for Biomedical Ethics and Humanities

Time to Report: 9:00 am

Place to Report: Center for Biomedical Ethics and Humanities

Attendance: Attendance at elective activities is mandatory.

  • Anyone who is ill or has a personal or family emergency must contact Student Affairs and the Attending on Service.
  • Students are allowed to take off up to 1 day per week to interview between November 1 and February 1.
    • Specific days missed must be approved by the Attending on Service.

Number of students per rotation: 25

Course Description: This course will combine law students, fourth-year medical students, and graduate nursing students to examine ethical and legal issues related to reproduction. Topics will include contraception, abortion, sterilization, prenatal genetic testing, assisted reproduction, coercive interventions in pregnancy, conscientious objection, substance use by pregnant women, research on pregnant women, and similar issues.


Learning objectives:
• To become familiar with cases, statutes/regulations, professional statements, institutional policies, and ethical norms relating to reproductive medicine & research.
• To critically analyze and discuss relevant historical & contemporary ethical and legal cases for current applications.


Specific legal topics vary, but often include the following:
• Contraception
• Abortion
• Therapeutic & reproductive cloning
• Substance use by pregnant women
• Assisted reproductive technologies
• Prenatal Screening
• Research on pregnant women
• Conscientious refusal
• Forced medical treatment