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Message from the Director

dan davis geisinger bioethicsWelcome and many thanks for taking the time to learn more about   Integrating Bioethics @ Geisinger!

Geisinger has a justly deserved reputation for quality and innovation in health care, due to the leadership of president and chief executive officer Glenn Steele, Jr., M.D., Ph.D., and to the passion and commitment of physicians, nurses, investigators and scientists, administrators, and others, who work hard every day to realize Abigail Geisinger’s founding vision of a health care organization that merits designation as “the best.” Integrating Bioethics @ Geisinger is but another reflection of this commitment and passion for progress in health care — another chapter in the nearly century long effort to “make it the best” by improving the ethics quality of patient care and research.

What is ethics quality? Ethics quality encompasses certain ideals and norms that should be achieved and realized in the care of patients and in the conduct of research. For example, in caring for patients, clinicians should strive to provide treatment and interventions that are appropriate and effective, based on sound clinical and scientific evidence, and consistent with the patient's wishes and with the integrity of clinical judgment. Clinicians should ensure that patients and their families are well informed about their options for treatment and care and should, at all times, respect the dignity inherent in every individual. And in light of the team-based, multidisciplinary nature of contemporary health care, clinicians should strive to communicate effectively with each other, developing and sustaining effective, collaborative relationships. Parallel norms constitute ethics quality in research, where honesty and integrity, excellence and accountability, along with respect for human participants in specifically clinical investigations, should inform the actions of Geisinger researchers.

As with other dimensions of quality care and quality research, ethics quality demands vigilance and forethought — in the form of people and programs specifically devoted to teaching, exploring, analyzing, promoting, and investigating the ethics of what we do as physicians and nurses, social workers and chaplains, administrators and front-line staffers, basic scientists and clinical investigators.  Ensuring that vigilance and forethought is a formidable challenge that’s beyond the ability or competence of any one individual or group. That’s why  Integrating Bioethics @ Geisinger is an initiative that seeks to engage many individuals and groups on multiple fronts.   

On behalf of  Integrating Bioethics @ Geisinger, I welcome your interest! If you have questions or need additional information, please feel free to write me at

Dan Davis, PhD
Director of Bioethics
Geisinger Health System