Issue: January 2010

Volume 10 Number 1

Planning for an Epidemic

[1] Confronting the possibility of a worldwide flu pandemic has a way of throwing some of our most enduring health care quandaries into sharp relief. How can we distribute limited resources equitably and morally? How do we balance care for the individual and care for the community when they are in conflict? How much power […]

The H1N1 Pandemic: Ethics and the Common Good

Our Story [1] As the second wave of H1N1 flu infection was peaking in late fall of 2009, many epidemiologists concurred that, fortunately, this flu pandemic would most likely be less severe than earlier anticipated. At the same time, many health officials were highly critical of those who had been prematurely lulled into complacency following […]

Exploring the Impact of the Pandemic Flu in Long Term Care Settings

Thanks to: Bill Kubat, V.P., Resident, Community and Quality Services and Chief Quality Officer and Laura Tubbs, Director, Resident Services/Clinical The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society is the largest not-for-profit provider of long term care in the United States. Good Samaritan has 21,000 staff members and 27,000 residents/clients in 230 locations in twenty-five states. Good […]

Ethical Deliberation at Alegent Health

[1] Alegent Health is a large multi-site, faith-based, non-profit healthcare system in the Omaha, Nebraska, greater metropolitan area. Alegent Health is co-sponsored by two church-affiliated systems: one Catholic and one ELCA. Faithful to the healing ministry of Jesus Christ, and guided by the social teachings of our sponsors, we are called to servant leadership that […]

Living Out a “Social Responsibility”: Reaching Out to Congregations and Communities in a Pandemic

[1] The H1N11 influenza pandemic has created distinctive challenges and opportunities for healthcare providers. At Advocate Health Care, a large, dually affiliated faith-based system serving the Chicago area, planning for the epidemic’s resurgence this fall spurred recognition of both a need and an opportunity for vigorous, creative community outreach.2 [2] When the H1N1 outbreak surfaced […]

Practical Theology and Practicalities in Church Response to Emergencies

[1] What is striking about the review of materials prepared by various church organizations concerning emergency preparedness and health concerns is how amazingly secularized the response of the church (as a generic term for various denominations) has been. In an assignment for this Journal, I reviewed materials prepared by the ELCA, the churches with which […]

Socialism: A Reality Check

[1] Eleven percent of the American public thinks President Obama is a Muslim. But another label, true only in the loosest and most attenuated sense, has been attached to him and his political allies. Back in May the state chairs of the Republican Party, meeting in Maryland, declared themselves alarmed at the Democrats’ drift toward […]

Immanuel Kant on the Christian Life

[1] I was once teaching Immanuel Kant’s Religion within the Boundaries of Mere Reason[1] to a group of undergraduates. We were discussing Kant’s claim that Christ acts as a “prototype” for human morality. That is, Christ provides us with the most perfect example of how to be good, one that is worthy of our emulation. […]