Bioethics and Healthcare Ethics

crosslisted as DP9060C

Rev. Dr Hoa Trung Dinh SJ Semester 1, 2019
Thursday 6.00pm — 9.00pm

This unit examines the biblical perspective on the value of human life and health care, considers the basic principles of Christian health ethics, the primacy of the person and the duty of reasonable care at every stage of human life and moral principles relevant to the identity of Catholic hospitals. Topics covered include abortion, euthanasia, the withholding of treatment, HIV/AIDS, rape, the anencephalic foetus, transplants of donated organs, human research, the allocation of scarce resources, triage and other issues raised by the environment, and modern medical technology: prenatal diagnosis, treatments for infertility, reproductive technology and embryonic stem cell research.

Census Date

Tuesday 19 March


DT2000C or DT8001C or equivalent


3 hours per week


two 3,000-word essays   2 x 50%

Set Text Recommended for Purchase

Shannon, Thomas, and Nicholas Kochler. An Introduction to Bioethics. 4th ed. New York: Paulist Press, 2009.


  • Ashcroft, Richard E., and Raanan Gillon, eds. Principles of Health Care Ethics. 2nd ed. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons, 2007.
  • Ashley, Benedict M., Jean de Blois, and Kevin D. O’Rourke. Health Care Ethics: A Theological Analysis. 5th ed. Washington: Georgetown University Press, 2006.
  • Catholic Health Australia. Code of Ethical Standards for Catholic Health and Aged Care Services in Australia. Red Hill: Catholic Health Australia, 2001.
  • Ford, Norman. The Prenatal Person: Ethics from Conception to Birth. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 2002.
  • Geach, Mary, and Luke Gormally, eds. Human Life, Action and Ethics: Essays by G. E. M. Anscombe. Exeter: Imprint Academic, 2005.
  • Gill, Robin. Health Care and Christian Ethics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006.
  • Kuhse, Helga, and Peter Singer. Bioethics: An Anthology. 2nd ed. Oxford: Blackwell, 2006.
  • Morris, John F., ed. Medicine, Healthcare and Ethics: Catholic Voices. Washington: Catholic University of America Press. 2007.
  • Morrison, Eileen E., ed. Healthcare Ethics: Critical Issues for the Twenty-First Century. 2nd ed. Sudbury: Jones and Bartlett, 2009.
  • Somerville, Margaret A. Death Talk: The Case Against Euthanasia and Physician-assisted Suicide. Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2001.
  • Taylor, Carol R., and Roberto Dell’Oro, eds. Health and Human Flourishing: Religion, Medicine and Moral Theology. Washington: Georgetown University Press, 2006.