SIU School of Medicine

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Department of Medical Humanities


Bethany J. Spielman, J.D., Ph.D., M.H.A.
Professor of Medical Humanities

Professor of Medical Jurisprudence
SIU School of Law

Director of the Program in Medical Ethics

Bethany Spielman, J.D. PhD.  M.H.A. is Professor of Medical Humanities in the School of Medicine and is cross-appointed in the School of Law. Her scholarly publications, which bridge bioethics and law,  include two books and more than a hundred articles that have been cited by the New York Times, the Institute of Medicine, the Irish government and numerous scholars. She is editor in chief of the journal Medicolegal and Bioethics and a contributor to the Encyclopedia of Applied Ethics.  Her current research projects, in collaboration with Memorial Hospital’s Clinical Ethics Center, focus on racial bias in clinical ethics consultation and on repeat ethics consultations.  Dr. Spielman teaches the law and ethics of human subjects research; physicians and human rights; law, religion and health care; ethics in a short white coat, and the social responsibilities of scientists.  She enjoys her husband and two sons, painting; yoga; chi walking; swimming, and the trails and visual and performing arts of Door County ,WI.


Research Interests

  • Nonconsensual Global Clinical Trials
  • Alien Tort Statute
  • Globalization of Health Law

Curricular Topics

  • Bioethics law
  • Physician-Patient relationship
  • The physician in society 
  • Human Subjects Experimentation
  • Physicians and Human Rights
  • Researchers' Social Responsibilites

Degrees and Granting Institutions

  • J.D., University of Virginia
  • M.H.A., Duke University
  • Ph.D., University of Iowa

Dr. Spielman's CV (.pdf file)

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