Maureen C. Kelley, PhD

Maureen C. Kelley, PhD


Children's Title: Treuman Katz Center for Pediatric Bioethics

Academic Title: Associate Professor, Division of Bioethics, Department of Pediatrics; Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Bioethics and Humanities, UWSOM; Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy, University of Washington

Research Center: Center for Clinical and Translational Research

Maureen Kelley is a bioethicist, working in maternal, neonatal and child health. She is Associate Professor in the Department of Pediatrics, in the Division of Bioethics, at the University of Washington School of Medicine. She is a core faculty member at the Treuman Katz Center for Pediatric Bioethics and a research investigator for the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth at Seattle Childrens Research Institute. Dr. Kelley also serves on the affiliated faculty at the University of Washingtons Center for Human Rights and is a member of the UW Global Center for Integrated Health of Women, Adolescents and Children. She earned her Ph.D. in Philosophy with a specialization in bioethics, at Rice University and completed her clinical bioethics training at Baylor College of Medicines program in Medical Ethics and Health Policy. She has held faculty appointments at Baylor College of Medicine and the University of Alabama, Sparkman Center for Global Health.

Dr. Kelley conducts qualitative research and uses ethical argument to inform policy and clinical practice in women's and children's health, with special focus on international clinical and research ethics. She has helped develop research ethics and clinical ethics programs in resource-limited settings, with special attention to women and children, in Siberia, Zambia, Fiji, and Uganda.


Research Description

I conduct research on ethical issues in pediatric global health and international research ethics and moral conflict resolution. I am involved in international research projects in Siberia and Zambia.

My current projects include: supporting adolescent decision-making for runaways, street children and orphans; improving criteria of vulnerability and risk for orphans and street children in the context of HIV/AIDS; managing the ethical dilemmas raised by infant feeding practices in HIV-infected mothers in resource-poor settings and the role of moral compromise in global health practice and policy.

Research Focus Area

Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, Behavioral / Mental Health


  • Maureen K. Kelley, PhD
    Silent Loss and the Clinical Encounter: Parents' and Physicians' Experiences of Stillbirth - A Qualitative Analysis
    BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth , 2012 Nov. 27 : 12:1371471 - 2393
  • Maureen K. Kelley, PhD
    An 8-year-old Foster Child with Behavioral Problems Who Needs a Bone Marrow Transplant
    Pediatrics , 2012 Oct. 8 : 130(5)936 - 40
  • Maureen K. Kelley, PhD
    Values in Translation: How Asking the Right Questions Can Move Translational Science Toward Greater Health Impact
    Clin Trans Sci , 2012 Aug. 7 : 5(6)445 - 51
  • Maureen K. Kelley, PhD
    The Invisible Children
    Journal of Narrative Inquiry in Bioethics , 2012 : 2(2)E4-E6
  • Maureen K. Kelley, PhD
    Biodefence and the Production of Knowledge: Rethinking the Problem
    J Med Ethics , 2011 Dec. 22 : 39(4)195 - 204
  • Maureen K. Kelley, PhD
    An Integrated Systems Biology Approach to the Study of Preterm Birth Using "-omic" Technology - A Guideline for Research
    BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth , 2011 Oct. 12 : 11:71
  • Maureen K. Kelley, PhD
    Refusals of Treatment in Adolescents and Young Adults in Clinical Ethics in Pediatrics: A Case-based Textbook
    Cambridge University Press , 2011 Oct. : 23-6
  • Maureen K. Kelley, PhD
    Conclusion: Genomic Medicine and Health Disparities in Achieving Justice in Genomic Translation: Rethinking the Pathway to Benefit
    Oxford University Press , 2011 Sept. 15 : 197 - 204
  • Maureen K. Kelley, PhD
    Counting Stillbirths: Women's Health and Reproductive Rights
    The Lancet , 2011 Apr, 14 : 377(9778)1636 - 37


Presentations Title Event Location Date
Opportunities and Challenges: New Diagnostics in Resource-Constrained Settings African Diagnostic Forum 2012 Johannesburg, South Africa Nov. 16, 2012
What About this Pregnancy? Ethical Considerations in Pregnancy Related Biobanking American Public Health Association Annual Meeting Washington, DC Nov. 1, 2011
Ethical Dilemmas in Research with Orphans and Vulnerable Children: Investigators Report from the Field American Society for Bioethics and Humanities Annual Meeting Minneapolis, MN Oct. 14, 2011
Research Beyond Borders, Responsibilities Beyond Research: Researcher's Ethical Obligations in Resource Poor Settings Pediatric Academic Societies Meeting Denver, CO May 30, 2011 - June 3, 2011
The Role of Advocacy in Healthcare for Wards of the State International Conference on Clinical Ethics Consultation Amsterdam, Netherlands May 20, 2011
Should International Adoption Be Part of Humanitarian Aid Efforts? Lessons from Haiti American Anthropological Association Meeting Charleston, SC Feb. 19, 2011

Research Funding

Grant Title Grantor Amount Award Date
Chao Center for International Research Ethics Methodist Hospital, Houston TX $4,816.00 Jan. 1, 2012
Preventing Preterm Birth Initiative Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation $19,500,000.00 Nov. 1, 2011
Research Participation with Wards of the State: Evaluating IRB and Investigator Perspectives The Greenwall Foundation $24,423.00 July 1, 2009