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Arthur Derse, MD, JD, FACEP

Arthur Derse

Arthur R. Derse, MD, JD, FACEP

Julia and David Uihlein Chair in Medical Humanities; Professor of Bioethics and Emergency Medicine; Director of the Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities

Locations

  • Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities

Contact Information

Education

JD, University of Wisconsin School of Law, 1987
Emergency Medicine Residency, Medical College of Wisconsin, 1983
MD, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, 1980
BA, University of Notre Dame, 1976

Biography

Dr. Arthur Derse is the Director of the Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities in the Institute for Health & Equity, Julia and David Uihlein Chair in Medical Humanities, and Professor of Bioethics and Emergency Medicine at the Medical College of Wisconsin

“It is my privilege to lead the Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities faculty and staff in the Institute who are dedicated to professionalism and excellence in scholarship, research, education and ethics consultation.”

Dr. Derse is member of the board of the American Society for Law, Medicine and Ethics (ASLME) and of the board of the Association of Bioethics Program Directors (ABPD). He is a member and past chair of the Ethics Committee of the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP). He serves on the Administrative Board of the Council for Faculty and Societies (CFAS) of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). He is fellow of the Hastings Center.

He is a past president of the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities (ASBH), and former chair of the National Ethics Committee of the Veterans Health Administration, He served as Senior Consultant for Academic Affairs at the American Medical Association’s Institute for Ethics and as a member of the American Bar Association’s Commission on Law and Aging. He served on ASBH’s Clinical Ethics Consultation Affairs Committee and its Quality Attestation Presidential Task Force.

His educational activities include oversight of the MCW's medical ethics curriculum and direction of graduate school courses encompassing law and bioethics, and ethics consultation. He co-directs MCW’s Bioethics Scholarly Pathway. He also directs two of the medical school's medical humanities elective courses. He is a member of the Culture and Systems Pillar of the Kern Institute for the Transformation of Medical Education. He directed the school's former second-year required Medical Ethics and Palliative Medicine course for 15 years.

Dr. Derse serves as ethics committee chair at Froedtert Hospital (the adult university hospital of the Medical College of Wisconsin) and ethics consultant for the Milwaukee VA Hospital and Children's Hospital of Wisconsin.

His publication and research have focused on emergency medicine and ethics, law and bioethics, informed consent, end-of-life decision making, confidentiality and the doctor-patient relationship. He is co-author of the Code of Ethics of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and Practical Ethics for Students, Interns and Residents: A Short Reference Manual, 4th Edition. He is also co-author of the Education on Palliative and End of Life Care (EPEC) Curriculum, as well as the EPEC curriculum designed for emergency physicians (EPEC-EM) and serves as a member of their advisory boards and national faculty. He has over 130 publications, including articles in the peer-reviewed literature, invited journal publications, editorials, book chapters, project publications, and books, and has given over 250 national and international presentations.

Dr. Derse serves on the editorial boards of the American Journal of Bioethics, the Journal of Clinical Ethics, and the Journal of Ethics. He is the founder and moderator of the MCW Bioethics Discussion Forum, a nationally recognized academic online discussion group.

He has been interviewed by The New York Times, NBC’s Dateline, NPR’s Morning Edition, The Washington Post, USA Today, The Atlantic Magazine, Fox News, MSNBC, Fox Business News, Sirius-XM Radio, The Christian Science Monitor, The Scientist, JAMA, BMJ, American Medical News, Family Practice News, ASCO Connection, Wired News, Hippocrates Magazine, and New York Public Radio (WNYC-FM), The Wisconsin State Journal, Wisconsin Public Radio (WPR), the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Milwaukee NPR (WUWM-FM) and Milwaukee PBS.

Honors and Awards

American Board of Internal Medicine Foundation John A. Benson, MD Professionalism Article Award, 2018
Convocation Address, Medical College of Wisconsin, 2014
American Society for Bioethics and Humanities Certificate of Excellence for Exemplary Leadership, Service, and Dedication, 2014
Medical College of Wisconsin Society of Teaching Scholars, 2007
American Society for Bioethics and Humanities Distinguished Service Award 2007
Letter of Commendation for Service, Undersecretary for Health, Veterans Health Administration, 2005
Gold Foundation Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Award, 2005
9-time recipient, Medical College of Wisconsin Outstanding Teacher, Medical School/Graduate School
Fellow of the American College of Emergency Physicians, 1988

Research Experience

  • Advance Directives
  • Advisory Committees
  • Bioethical Issues
  • Bioethics
  • Codes of Ethics
  • Commitment of Mentally Ill
  • Curriculum
  • Defensive Medicine
  • Disaster Medicine
  • Disasters
  • Double Effect Principle
  • Education, Graduate

Clinical Expertise

  • Clinical Ethics Consultation
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Humanities
  • Law

Leadership Positions

  • Board Member and Secretary, Association of Bioethics Program Directors
  • Board Member, American Society for Law, Medicine and Ethics
  • Director, MCW Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities
  • Director, MCW Medical Humanities Program
  • Former Chair, Ethics Committee, American College of Emergency Physicians
  • Former Chair, Veterans Health Affairs National Ethics Committee
  • Past President, American Society for Bioethics and Humanities

Publications