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Michigan Medical Ethics
Ethical Guidelines For Allocation Of Scarce Medical Resources And Services During Public Health Emergencies In Michigan
Project Overview
The Developing Ethical Guidelines for Allocation of Scarce Medical Resources and Service During Public Health Emergencies in Michigan Project (Project) has three primary objectives:
  1. engaging in a collaborative process to address ethical issues that may arise during emergencies in Michigan related to allocating scarce medical resources and services;
  2. developing ethical guidelines and other support materials that meet the needs of state, regional, and local partners who may be faced with making difficult decisions during an incident that leads to scarcity of needed medical resources and services; and
  3. public engagement and dissemination of ethical guidelines and materials.
Project Leadership
The Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH) Office of Public Health Preparedness (OPHP) has funded this project utilizing Department of Health and Human Services, Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, Hospital Preparedness Program resources since October 2008. The Principal Investigator for the Project has been Lance Gable, an Associate Professor of Law at Wayne State University Law School. Professor Gable has worked closely with MDCH and an Expert Advisory Committee (EAC) to develop the Guidelines and related materials. The EAC is comprised of a multidisciplinary group of experts and researchers from across the state with a variety of experience and training. The EAC includes state and local health officials, emergency room physicians, EMS professionals, bioethicists, and lawyers. During the past few years, the EAC has provided systematic input, feedback, and direction to help inform the content of the ethical guidelines and other materials developed by this Project and has met regularly to discuss important issues of medical ethics in Michigan.
Project Accomplishments
We have developed Ethicals Guidelines for the Allocation of Scarce Medical Resources and Services During Public Health Emergencies in Michigan. The Guidelines outline a set of criteria to assist in making allocation decisions when situations of scarcity exist during emergencies. These criteria are designed to minimize morbidity and mortality, to sustain a functioning society, and to ensure fairness. Three policy annexes have been developed as well, which provide specific guidance for hospital settings, for EMS settings, and on legal issues, as well as other materials designed for public outreach and education.
​​​EMS Annex