Treuman Katz Center for Pediatric Bioethics

The first of its kind in the nation, the Treuman Katz Center improves the lives of children and their families by addressing ethical questions that arise in pediatric care and research. Learn more.

Programs and Resources

The Treuman Katz Center serves as a national resource, helping physicians, researchers and policymakers advance their knowledge of bioethics and navigate complex moral dilemmas.

Center Highlights

Key Partnerships

Partnerships are an essential part of the Treuman Katz Center’s mission. Our researchers collaborate with colleagues across the nation and around the world in pursuit of answers to complex bioethics questions.

Our partners include the Center for Clinical and Translational Research at Seattle Children’s Research Institute and the Department of Bioethics and Humanities and the Institute of Translational Health Sciences at the University of Washington.

Bioethics Consultations

Our bioethicists provide practical guidance to families, providers, researchers and policymakers about patient care, public health and research issues. Our consultation service is available to colleagues throughout Seattle Children’s and the University of Washington, and we offer informal advice to people at outside institutions. Learn more about our services.

Publications

Jecker NS, Wightman AG, Rosenberg AR, Diekema DS. From protection to entitlement: selecting research subjects for early phase clinical trials involving breakthrough therapies. J Med Ethics. 2017 Jun;43(6):391-400.

Cole AM, Baldwin L-M, Keppel GA, Kuwana E, Mollis BL, Wilfond BS. Conflicts of interest and distribution of resources to community partners: An organizational ethics dilemma. Progress in Community Health Partnerships: Research, Education, and Action. 2017; 11(1):99-106.

Hofstetter AM, Robinson JD, Lepere K, Cunningham M, Etsekson N, Opel DJ. Clinician-parent discussions about influenza vaccination of children and their association with vaccine acceptance.Vaccine. 2017 May 9;35(20):2709-2715.

Feraco AM, Dussel V, Orellana L, Kang TI, Geyer JR, Rosenberg AR, Feudtner C, Wolfe J. Tumor talk and child well-being: Perceptions of "good" and "bad" news among parents of children with advanced cancer.J Pain Symptom Manage. 2017 May;53(5):833-841.

Straehla JP, Barton KS, Yi-Frazier JP, Wharton C, Baker KS, Bona K, Wolfe J, Rosenberg AR. The benefits and burdens of cancer: A prospective longitudinal cohort study of adolescents and young adults. J Palliat Med. 2017 May;20(5):494-501.

Wilfond BS, Morales C, Taylor HA. Should patients be required to undergo standard chemotherapy before being eligible for novel phase I immunotherapy clinical trials?Am J Bioeth. 2017 Apr;17(4):66-67.

Taylor HA, Morales C, Wilfond BS. Genotype-driven recruitment in population-based biomedical research. Am J Bioeth. 2017 Apr;17(4):58-59.

Bednarczyk RA, Tate T, Opel DJ, Omer SB. The church, the state, and vaccine policy. Am J Bioeth. 2017 Apr;17(4):50-52.

Wightman A. Management dilemmas in pediatric nephrology: Time-limited trials of dialysis therapy. Pediatr Nephrol. 2017 Apr;32(4):615-620.

Wightman A. Is it permissible for a child with neurodevelopmental disabilities to be a living donor transplant candidate, but not a deceased donor candidate? Should donor source influence transplant center deliberations?Pediatr Transplant. 2017 Mar;21(2).

Khoo EJ, Schremmer RD, Diekema DS, Lantos JD. Ethical concerns when minors act as standardized patients. Pediatrics. 2017 Mar;139(3). pii: e20162795.

Tate T. The Clue. Hastings Cent Rep. 2017 Mar;47(2):3-4.

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Our Experts in the Media

  • Could Charlie Gard's case happen in the United States?
    07.06.17 - CNN
    Although a Charlie Gard case could happen in the United States, "it seems unlikely," said one pediatric bioethicist from the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine. Similar cases in the U.S. tend to be resolved in favor of parental rights, he explained. Seema Shah, a lawyer and ethicist who is a faculty member at the Treuman Katz Center for Pediatric Bioethics at Seattle Children's Research Institute, explained that U.S. courts consider "parental discretion," not parental responsibility. American parents have "discretion to make decisions" on behalf of their children, Shah said, "up to the point where their decisions are going to cause harm to their children."
    Could Charlie Gard’s case happen in the United States?GANT News
  • ‘Intactivists’ Oppose Circumcision of Children
    04.14.17 – Houston Chronicle
    Since 2012 the American Academy of Pediatrics’ official position has been that the procedure’s benefits outweigh the risks. Seattle Children’s pediatrician Dr. Douglas Diekema, who was on the AAP task force that issued the 2012 statement, was quick to qualify that. “From a personal perspective I would say better terminology is ‘The benefits justify the risks,’” he said during an interview. “But different people weigh the risks differently.”
  • In Pausing Human Research on Zika, Medical Ethicists Acknowledge a Dark Past
    03.21.17 – WBUR CommonHealth
    The National Institutes of Health called for an ethics consultation on the study which involved deliberately infecting a small group of consenting adults with the Zika virus to learn about the disease and speed up the search for a vaccine. The panel’s chair – lawyer, ethicist and pediatrics professor Seema Shah, of the University of Washington and Seattle Children’s Research Institute – is mentioned in the article.
  • Doctors’ guidance on how to talk to terminally ill teens
    10.17.16 – CBS News
    A paper published in JAMA Pediatrics argues that when it comes to adolescents or teens with a life-threatening illness, telling the truth is the best option. Dr. Abby Rosenberg, medical director of Seattle Children’s Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology Program, and her colleagues reviewed ethical justifications for and against having direct truth-telling conversations with adolescents.