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The role of the Ethics department is to support the integration of Ascension Health’s Values and Catholic Identity with the decisions through which Ascension Health lives out its Mission and Vision.

We do this by:

  • Fostering disciplined processes of decision making that promote our Mission, Vision, Values and Catholic identity in both the clinical and organizational realms.
  • Providing research and consultation to Health Ministry leadership working through organizational and clinical ethical issues.
  • Providing education and resources for leaders and work teams to help carry out their ethics responsibilities across the System.
  • Promoting trusted dialogue between Ascension Health and local Ordinaries (diocesan bishops), and supporting Health Ministry leaders in their conversations with their bishops in order to strengthen the Catholic health ministry’s relationship with the institutional Church and its identity as a healing ministry of the Church.
  • Leading the Systemwide Palliative Care Initiative.

Libraries of our assessment tools, cases, ethical decision-making tools, issues and concepts, key ethical principles and sample brochures can be found under Healthcare Ethics.

Church Relations

The Senior Vice President, Ethics, Discernment and Church Relations, assists Mission leaders in local Health Ministries as they dialogue with their local Ordinaries (diocesan bishops) regarding the ways we are living out our Catholic Identity as a healing ministry of the Church, and how we are helping create a “strong, vibrant Catholic health ministry in the United States which will lead to the transformation of healthcare.” (From the Ascension Health Vision statement)

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