The Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues (Bioethics Commission) has released two new educational materials, Deliberative Scenario: Seasonal Influenza Vaccination Policy for a Local Public Health Department and Facilitator Guide for Deliberative Scenario: Seasonal Influenza Vaccination Policy for a Local Public Health Department. This new deliberative scenario and facilitator guide build on the work of two of the Bioethics Commission’s reports, Ethics and Ebola: Public Health Planning and Response (Ethics and Ebola) and Bioethics for Every Generation: Deliberation and Education in Health, Science, and Technology.
This deliberative scenario and facilitator guide draw from contemporary ethical questions, and are designed to provide public health professionals with the tools to integrate bioethics into public health practice. It highlights contemporary ethical questions about policies related to the administration of seasonal influenza vaccinations for employees in local public health departments, and whether or not employees should be required to receive vaccines annually.
This deliberative scenario presents an outline of ethically challenging situations that can be incorporated into deliberation process, and provides an opportunity to practice the method of deliberation decision-making. The Facilitator Guide for Deliberative Scenario: Seasonal Influenza Vaccination Policy for a Local Public Health Department includes specific instructions for facilitating deliberations for the situations outlined in this deliberative scenario.
As outlined in Bioethics for Every Generation, democratic deliberation is a method of decision making that can help groups to identify reasonable options for action when faced with questions or complex topics without a clear consensus about the way forward. This facilitator guide provides public health professionals with specific instructions for facilitating deliberations about a challenging decision and the potential impacts of policy changes on various stakeholders. The guide also includes additional reading based on the roles played in the deliberation.
This new deliberative scenario and facilitator guide introduce public health professionals and public health ethics committees to the process of democratic deliberation, as well as to highlight the benefits that democratic deliberation can have in policymaking or the implementation of public health programs.
These new educational resources are a part of a collection of over 60 educational materials that the Bioethics Commission has developed throughout its tenure to support the integration of bioethics education in many disciplines in traditional and nontraditional educational and professional settings. This collection includes a series of teaching tools for students and professionals at various educational levels, including topic-based modules, case studies, deliberative scenarios, videos, webinars, and empirical research resources, that address a variety of ethical issues related to public health emergencies, whole genome sequencing, human subjects research, and more.
All of these resources are available for free download, and can be integrated into or adapted for existing or new curricula. All Bioethics Commission educational materials are free and available at www.bioethics.gov/education. The Bioethics Commission encourages feedback on its materials at email@example.com.