Charting a Course for Ethics in Managed Care

Conference on the ethics of managed care

The American Geriatrics Society, New York, and the Hastings Center, Garrison, N.Y., a bioethics research institute, co-sponsored the Congress of Clinical Societies, a two-day conference at the New York Academy of Medicine on October 7–8, 1996, that addressed ethical issues raised by the advent of managed care.

The meeting was the fourth in a series that started in 1987.

Key Results

  • The conference brought together leading scholars in medical ethics, health policy, law, and medicine with representatives of the managed care industry to discuss how the integrity of medical practice could be maintained and strengthened in managed care settings during a time of dramatic change in the health care delivery system.
  • Joseph J. Fins, M.D., associate for medicine at The Hastings Center, a practicing internist, and director of medical ethics at New York Hospital, organized the conference.
  • Seventeen papers from the Congress were published in the March 1998 issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. Common themes among the papers were the:
    • Growing corporatization of medical practice.
    • The decline of professional autonomy.
    • The growing influence of forces external to the traditional doctor-patient relationship in determining how medicine is practiced.
  • In addition to the topical papers, Fins and Erica Blacksher, wrote an overview paper, which was also published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.


The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) supported the project with a grant of $49,016.

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