On Friday, November 22, the students and staff of Penn’s Pre-Health Programs welcomed David and Lyn Silfen University Professor of Ethics Jonathan D. Moreno for a discussion of his recently published book as part of the program’s Distinguished Speaker series. Co-authored with University of Pennsylvania president Amy Gutmann, Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven but Nobody Wants to Die: Bioethics and the Transformation of Health Care in America examines the moral and philosophical questions that accompany developments in public health policies and medical research breakthroughs.
The book discussion explored the ethical implications of emerging drugs and technologies from oxytocin, the “trust hormone,” to recent neuroimaging studies that come close to capturing the dreams of sleeping subjects. Moreno, who founded the annual Penn Bioethics Film Festival, showed clips of movies and documentaries which contextualize historical cases such as the secret but federally-sanctioned LSD experiments on uninformed subjects in the 20th century. The Pre-Health Programs students who attended the event came equipped to ask questions and participate in the discussion, having received an autographed copy of the book one month in advance.
The Penn Pre-Health Programs Distinguished Speaker series invites medical scholars and practitioners to discuss critical concepts and cutting-edge research with the students. Previous speakers include Rahim Rizi (Professor at Perelman School of Medicine and the Functional and Metabolic Imaging Group), Lance Wahlert (Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director of the Project on Bioethics, Sexuality, and Gender Identity), and Batsirai Bvunzawabaya (Director for Outreach and Prevention at Penn’s Counseling and Psychological Services).
For more information about Pre-Health Programs workshops, events, and resources, visit the Program Features page.