More About the Author
Robert M. Veatch, Ph. D., is Professor of Medical Ethics and the former Director of the Kennedy Institute of Ethics at Georgetown University. He is also professor in the Philosophy Department and has held appointment as adjunct professor in the Georgetown Department of Community and Family Medicine. He is the author or editor of 45 books, the most recent of which include The Basics of Bioethics (2012); Patient Heal Thyself (2009); and (with Amy Haddad and Dan English) Case Studies in Biomedical Ethics (2010). He was the Senior Editor of the Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal for 20 years and has served on the editorial boards of the JAMA, Journal of Medicine and Philosophy, American Journal of Bioethics, and Death Studies.
He has taught over 15,000 students at Georgetown, Columbia, Dartmouth, Brown, Union, and St. George's University (Grenada). His current research is on the history of professional medical ethics. He has served as Chair of Georgetown's Institutional Review Board for social science research, Chair of the Board of Directors of Hospice Care of the District of Columbia, and a member of the Board of Directors of the Washington Regional Transplant Consortium.
He received a BS in Pharmacy from Purdue (1961), a MS in Pharmacology, University of California Medical Center (1962), and a B.D., M.A., and Ph. D. (1970) concentrating in medical ethics from Harvard University. He has received an honorary D.Hum. from Creighton University and an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from Union University. Prior to coming to Georgetown, he was Senior Associate and director of the Research Group on Death and Dying at the Hastings Center in New York.
He has served as an ethics consultant and expert witness in over 30 legal cases including the legal case of Karen Quinlan (1975-76), the young woman left in a persistent vegetative state whose parents won a landmark legal victory establishing the right of families to make critical treatment refusal decisions, and the case of Baby K (1992), the child with anencephaly whose mother won the right of access to life-support for her. He has received the Distinguished Service Award of the United Methodist Association, the Research Career Recognition Award, Georgetown University, and the Lifetime Achievement Award of the American Society of Bioethics and the Humanities. In 2008 he served as the Gifford Lecturer at the University of Edinburgh. Throughout his career he has been an advocate for the rights and welfare of patients as active decision makers in medicine.