Fairbanks Program in Pediatric Ethics

Dedicated Pediatric Ethics programming at the Fairbanks Center for Medical Ethics began in July of 2016 when Dr. Brian Leland, a Pediatric Critical Care Physician and Ethicist, joined FCME as fellowship director and core faculty.  The goals of the Pediatric Ethics Program include improving the medical care of children by supporting ethical decision making through ethics service, education, and research.  The Program is administratively housed at FCME and focuses on the care of children and medical and ancillary teams that support those care efforts at the Academic Health Center and system wide IU Health hospitals. The Pediatric Ethics Senior Advisory Council, which Dr. Leland chairs, supports program development and ethics infrastructure at Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health.

Service

Pediatric Ethics Consultation:

Pediatric Ethics Consultation is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.  Dr. Leland and Dr. Lucia Wocial, Nurse Ethicist for IU Health and former Neonatal intensive care nurse, along with the core faculty of FCME, serve as the foundation of the ethics consultation service providing resources and expertise to the pediatric community throughout IU Health.  This service offers analysis and a framework for ethical decision making in the provision of medical care to pediatric patients, facilitates values-based decisions through difficult situations, and supports providers and staff experiencing moral distress. 

PEACE Rounds:

Founded by Dr. Lucia Wocial, Nurse Ethicist for IU Health, and directed by Dr. Leland, PEACE (Pediatric Ethics and Communication Excellence) Rounds is a weekly multidisciplinary conference discussing the care of Pediatric Intensive Care patients at Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health with prolonged stays and ethically challenging aspects of management.  PEACE Rounds provides continuity for prolonged length of stay patients, reduces healthcare providers’ moral distress, and facilitates effective communication within and between medical teams as well as families.  Click here to read more about PEACE Rounds.

Nurse holding hands with a little girl walking down the hallway

Service

Pediatric Ethics Consultation:

Pediatric Ethics Consultation is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.  Dr. Leland and Dr. Lucia Wocial, Nurse Ethicist for IU Health and former Neonatal intensive care nurse, along with the core faculty of FCME, serve as the foundation of the ethics consultation service providing resources and expertise to the pediatric community throughout IU Health.  This service offers analysis and a framework for ethical decision making in the provision of medical care to pediatric patients, facilitates values-based decisions through difficult situations, and supports providers and staff experiencing moral distress. 

PEACE Rounds:

Pediatric Ethics Consultation is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.  Dr. Leland and Dr. Lucia Wocial, Nurse Ethicist for IU Health and former Neonatal intensive care nurse, along with the core faculty of FCME, serve as the foundation of the ethics consultation service providing resources and expertise to the pediatric community throughout IU Health.  This service offers analysis and a framework for ethical decision making in the provision of medical care to pediatric patients, facilitates values-based decisions through difficult situations, and supports providers and staff experiencing moral distress. 

Education

A group photo of the fellowship.

FCME Fellowship:
With renewed commitment to Pediatric Ethics, the Fairbanks Center for Medical Ethics Fellowship in Clinical Ethics has strengthened its Pediatric Ethics curriculum, now covering topics including but not limited to: Neonatal Ethics, Pediatric Ethics, Pediatric Case Discussion, Adolescent Ethics, Adolescent Consent, and Surrogate Decision Making.

Brian Leland talking to a small kid on a hospital bed.

Riley Hospital for Children:
As Medical Director of Pediatric Ethics at Riley Hospital for Children, Dr. Leland is also establishing an ethics focused curriculum for physicians (Residents and Fellows) in training and educational opportunities through Lunch and Learn platforms as well as biannual Pediatric Ethics Grand Rounds.

Pediatric Ethics Subcommittee

Coming soon!  The Pediatric Ethics Subcommittee at Riley Hospital for Children will grow the culture of ethics within the institution, promote education through multidisciplinary member representation, and be a platform to review and bring forward ethics initiatives to serve patients and clinicians.

Pediatric Ethics Subcommittee

Research

Pediatric Ethics Needs Assessment and Historical Consultation Review:

Structured interviews with key stakeholders throughout the pediatric hospital community at IU Health and a 9 year review of past ethics consultations has enabled an understanding of the ethics culture, relative strengths, and areas of greatest need.  These investigations have been integral to informing program development for Pediatric Ethics.  Ongoing and future research endeavors will further inform program initiatives locally and disseminate important ethical constructs in the care of pediatric patients across the country.