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The JCB Voice

September 2019 / Vol. 25 / No. 1
In this month's issue:
Featured / In the News / JCB Seminars & Events / Announcements / Events / Employment Opportunities / Studentship Opportunities / Fellowship Opportunities / Call for Submissions / Publications


JCB Welcomes Kevin Reel as Director of the MHSc in Bioethics Program

We are very pleased to announce that Kevin Reel has joined the JCB team as the new Director of the MHSc in Bioethics program! Kevin is Assistant Professor in the Department of Occupational Science & Occupational Therapy and in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health. He is also teaches the Practical Bioethics course in the MHSc program.

Digital Fit for Purpose?: Possibilities and Pitfalls of Data Integration in Health Systems

Dr. Sarah Wadmann and Prof. Fiona Miller joined us as speakers at the Ethics & Governance of AI for Health lecture on "Digital Fit for Purpose?: Possibilities and Pitfalls of Data Integration in Health Systems". If you missed the lecture, it is now available on our YouTube channel.
» Watch lecture

In the News

A Bioethicist's Harrowing Encounter with Prescription Painkillers Highlights Systemic Health Care Problems

Imagine having your foot pinned between a moving van and a motorcycle and subsequently undergoing five surgeries to restore function to your mangled limb over a 1-month period. (Daniel Buchman, Science Magazine)
» Read more

What Would Frederick Banting Think of ‘Insulin Tourism’?

It has been called “insulin tourism.” But to a caravan of Americans who crossed the border to Canada earlier this summer, it was also a pilgrimage.
» Read more

Pig to Human Heart Transplants ‘Possible Within Three Years’

Adapted pig hearts could be transplanted into patients within three years, according to a report citing the surgeon who pioneered heart transplantation in the UK.
» Read more

For Rules on Creating ‘CRISPR Babies’ from Edited Embryos, Scientists Call a Do-Over

The second-most shocking thing He Jiankui told the international genome editing summit in Hong Kong last November — right after announcing that twin girls had been born from embryos whose DNA he’d changed with CRISPR — was that he’d followed guidelines on embryo editing set forth by a panel of leading U.S. scientists and ethicists.
» Read more

JCB Seminars & Events

Health System Transformation in Ontario: Is it Time for a New Model of Ethics Service Delivery?

September 11, 2019
Jennifer Gibson, Sun Life Financial Chair in Bioethics and Director, Joint Centre for Bioethics, Associate Professor, Institute of Health Policy, Management & Evaluation, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto
» Watch video

Stopping the Unsuccessful ECMO Course: An Exploration of Applied Clinical Ethics, Social, and Team Challenges

September 18, 2019
Roxanne Kirsch, MD, MBE, FRCPC, FAAP, Critical Care Bioethics Associate, Pediatric Cardiac Intensivist, Assistant Professor Pediatrics, The Hospital for Sick Children
» Watch video

Is Advance Care Planning a Privileged ACT?

September 25, 2019
Bob Parke, Consulting Ethicist, University Health Network
» Read more

Dying at Home – Caring for Patients with Structural Vulnerabilities at End of Life in Urban Settings

September 26, 2019
The webinar is part of a series presented by the OCFP's Collaborative Mentoring Network in collaboration with the University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics and the Ontario Palliative Care Network.
» Register

Management of Intersex Newborns: Legal and Ethical Developments

October 2, 2019
Bernard Dickens, OC, PhD, LLD, LLD(hc), FRSC, Professor Emeritus of Health Law and Policy, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Medicine and Joint Centre for Bioethics, University of Toronto
» Read more

Canadian Bioethics Society: 31st Annual Conference

June 3-5, 2020
Save the date! The theme of the annual conference is "The Role of Bioethics in AI and Emerging Health Technologies: Activator, Inhibitor or Collaborator?"
For more information please contact Tracy Murphy, CBS Administrator,
Considering a professional Master's degree in bioethics at U of T? Join us for the next MHSc in Bioethics program online Q&A happening on Thursday, September 26th at 12pm EST.
» Register now


Julia Gill started a position as an Ethicist at Vancouver Coastal Health.

Mark Handelman has been reappointed to The Ontario Consent and Capacity Board. He first served on the Board from 1998 to 2008, for 8 years of which he was a Vice Chair and Senior Lawyer Member.

Sean Hillman successfully defended his PhD thesis entitled "Religion, Medicine, Bioethics, and the Law in End-of-life Care: South Asian Religious Adherent Perspectives" for the Collaborative Specialization in Bioethics program.

Patrick Jachyra has received a 2019 post-doctoral research fellowship with CAMH Research.

Pamela Klassen was named as a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.

The Prevention of Error-Based Transfers (PoET) Project, led by Jill Oliver and Paula Chidwick, has been approved for $1.5 million in funding through Health Canada's Health Policy Contribution Program.

Bob Parke has joined the UHN Bioethics Program team for 2.5 days a week for the duration of Andria Bianchi's maternity leave.


Mary and Philip Seeman Health Law Policy and Ethics Seminar Series

Toronto, ON
September 26, 2019
"House arrest" under a Community Treatment Order and the Interpretation of Mental Health Legislation
Presenter: John Dawson, Faculty of Law, University of Otago
12:30 to 2:00 p.m.; Solarium (Room FA2), Falconer Hall, 84 Queen's Park
» Read more

Ethics of AI in Context

Toronto, ON
October 1, 2019
Can Machines Learn from Our Mistakes?
Presenter: Marzyeh Ghassemi
This talk will delve into how the machine learning revolution can be applied in a healthcare setting, to improve medical care and create actionable insights in human health.
» Read more

UHN Bioethics & Practice Based Education Presents - Beyond Physicians & Pharma: Re-thinking Conflict of Interest on the Frontlines

Toronto, ON
October 2, 2019
Presenter: Dr. Quinn Grundy
12:00 to 1:00 p.m.; BMO Education & Conference Centre, 60 Leonard Avenue. Free admission, no registration required.

2019 University of Toronto Surgical Ethics Symposium

Toronto, ON
November 8, 2019
Topics include: Fetal Closure of Myelomeningocele – Paige Church, Sunnybrook/Holland Bloorview; Parent-directed Gynaecological Surgeries in the Developmental Delayed Child – James Anderson, SickKids; Disagreements in Care in the Adolescent Oncology Patient – Sevan Hopyan and Abha Gupta, SickKids; Ethics M and Ms (Registrant Submitted Cases).
The symposium will take place at the Chestnut Conference Centre, 89 Chestnut St. from 9 am until 4 pm.
» Read more

Centre for Clinical Ethics Annual Conference

Toronto, ON
November 22, 2019
Understanding and Responding to Bias in Healthcare
The goal of the 26th annual Centre for Clinical Ethics conference is to have a conversation about the role of bias in healthcare and what can be done about it.
» Read more

16th Annual International Conference on Clinical Ethics & Consultation

Spier Estate, Stellenbosch, South Africa
March 31-April 3, 2020
Beyond Borders: Exploring New Frontiers
The conference will explore clinical ethics challenges that traverse borders and shift paradigms against a backdrop of cultural complexity and diversity.
» Read more

Employment Opportunities

Ethics Positions (3)

Centre for Applied Ethics, McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, QC
The CAE is currently looking for three (3) talented candidates with a keen interest in bioethics to join its ranks.
Deadline to apply: Not listed
» Read more

Fellowship Opportunities

Bioethics Fellowship

Treuman Katz Center for Pediatric Bioethics, Seattle Children's Hospital, Seattle, WA, USA
The Bioethics Fellowship is a two-year program that trains physicians in bioethics with an emphasis on pediatric issues. The goal of the fellowship is to prepare individuals for academic careers with an emphasis on scholarship in pediatric bioethics.
Deadline to apply: September 30, 2019
» Read more

Postdoctoral Associate

Center for Medical Ethics & Health Policy, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX, USA
This competitive 2-year program offers the opportunity to train with the Center's nationally renowned faculty and staff who lead premier Clinical Ethics Consultation Services at adult private hospital systems in the Texas Medical Center.
Deadline to apply: October 31, 2019
» Read more

2019-2020 RBC Post-Doctoral & Graduate Fellowships

University of Toronto, Toronto, ON
These Fellowships will support research and innovation at the University of Toronto and recognize emerging leaders who are establishing a record of research, scholarship, and impact, and exhibit the potential to make significant contributions to the body of research in the field of entrepreneurship and innovation.
Deadline to apply: November 11, 2019
» Read more

Studentship Opportunities

Volunteer Studentships

Sinai Health System, Toronto
The Bioethics Department at Sinai Health System offers studentship opportunities to students interested in bioethics. Students are matched with a supervisor and location (Mount Sinai Hospital and/or Bridgepoint) depending on their interests and available projects.
Deadline to apply: November 1, 2019 (Winter term)
» Read more

Volunteer Studentships

SickKids Hospital, Toronto
The Bioethics Department at SickKids is keen to offer a range of opportunities to students interested in paediatric bioethics. We use the term students in a broad sense to include anyone who wishes to pursue such a learning opportunity, including practising Health Care Professionals.
Deadline to apply: November 1, 2019 (Winter term)
» Read more

Call for Submissions



First, Do Less Harm: Harm Reduction as a Principle of Health Policy and Law

The Ottawa Hub for Harm Reduction together with the Centre for Health Law, Policy and Ethics will hold a two-day conference at the University of Ottawa on May 14-15, 2020 examining current challenges and opportunities for developing innovative harm reduction approaches in Canada. We invite talk proposals related to the law and policy of harm reduction.
Submission deadine: October 15, 2019
» Read more



University of Toronto President's Impact Awards

Nominations are being accepted for this award which aims to celebrate and honour faculty members whose research has led to significant impact beyond academia, including, for example, on society, culture, public policy or law, practices or services, education, the development of products, processes or services from inventions, the economy, health, a profession, the environment, quality of life, or through public engagement.
Submission deadine: October 31, 2019
» Read more


  • Buchman DZ, Wadhawan S. Global Vision for Neuroethics Needs More Social Justice: Brain Imaging, Chronic Pain, and Population Health Inequalities. AJOB Neuroscience. 2019;10(3):130-2. Read more
  • Chin-Yee B, Upshur R. Three Problems with Big Data and Artificial Intelligence in Medicine. Perspectives in Biology and Medicine. 2019;62(2):237-256.. Read more
  • DeMichelis C, Shaul RZ, Rapoport A. Continuing the Conversation About Medical Assistance in Dying. Journal of Medical Ethics. 2019;0:1-2. Read more
  • Gill SR, Benatar SR. Reflections on the Political Economy of Planetary Health. Review of International Political Economy Journal. 07 Aug 2019. Read more
  • Hebert PC, Rosen W. A Practical Guide to Ethics for Medical Trainees and Physicians, 4th ed. North York:Oxford University Press;2020. 440pp. Read more
  • Killackey T, Peter E, Maciver J, Mohammed S. Advance Care Planning with Chronically Ill Patients: Arelational Autonomy Approach. Nursing Ethics. 2019:1-12. Read more
  • Robson G, Gibson N, Thompson A, Benatar S, Denburg A. Global Health Ethics: The Scope of an Emerging Field, 1977-2015. BMC Medical Ethics. 2019;20:53. Read more
  • Selby D, Bean S, Isenberg-Grzeda E, Bioethics BHD, Nolen A. Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD): A Descriptive Study From a Canadian Tertiary Care Hospital. American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine. 30 Jun 2019. Read more
  • Singh JA. Informed Consent and Community Engagement in Open Field Research: Lessons for Gene Drive Science. BMC Medical Ethics. 2019;20(54):1-12. Read more 
  • Tri-Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans, 2nd ed. 2018. Read more.
  • Valenti E, Banks C, Calcedo-Barba A, Bensimon CM, Hoffmann KM, Pelto-Piri V, Jurin T, Mendoza OM, Mundt AP, Rugkåsa J, Tubini J, Priebe S. Informal Coercion in Psychiatry: A Focus Group Study of Attitudes and Experiences of Mental Health Professionals in Ten Countries. Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol. 2015;50(8):1297-308. Read more
  • Webster F, Rice K, Bhattacharyya O, Katz J, Oosenbrug E, Upshur R. The Mismeasurement of Complexity: Provider Narratives of Patients with Complex Needs in Primary Care Settings. International Journal for Equity in Health. 2019;18(107):1-8. Read more
  • Zimmermann C, Ryan S, Hannon B, Saltman A, Rodin G, Mak E, Al-Awamer A, Lau J. Team-Based Outpatient Early Palliative Care: A Complex Cancer Intervention. BMJ Supportive & Palliative Care. Online First: 12 Aug 2019. Read more

If you have a publication you would like to add to next month's list, please email
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