Associate Professor Thaddeus Mason Pope
recently traveled to Australia to speak at the 2011 Australasian Conference of Bioethics and Health Law 2011 Conference held in Queensland, Australia from July 7th through 10th. He delivered a talk titled Divergent Legal Approaches to Medical Futility Disputes: Comparing Australia and the United States
“I attended this conference a few years ago and found it valuable,” said Professor Pope, who was particularly interested in attending this year, as the four-day conference focused on clinical futility. “This is the medical-legal issue that has been at the core of my research interests and the subject of my community service in Delaware and New Jersey.”
Both Professor Pope and a Yale medical school professor spoke on how the United States handles medical futility disputes. “Making comparisons reveals and highlights strengths and weaknesses of different dispute resolution mechanisms,” said Pope.
The conference also offered him an opportunity to hear thought-provoking presentations from other experts in the field. “There were particularly noteworthy presentations by Jocelyn Downie, a Canadian law professor, and by Ray Moynihan, a journalist who has written about the drug industry,” he noted, adding, “I also enjoyed learning about several new initiatives in the state of Queensland.”
Professor Pope also learned about the benefits of M.H.L. programs at several Australian law schools that are similar to the M.J. in Health Law offered by Widener Law.
While in Australia, he also took in some of the sites, and took the opportunity to climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge. “Many of the Australia cities remind me of Los Angeles because many of the best attractions involve the mountains and the sea,” he said, adding, “In addition to the bridge, I got to hike the beaches at Manly and Gold Coast, and to see awesome art museums in Brisbane.”
Professor Pope wrote about some of his experiences on his Medical Futility Blog
, including climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge
, Jocelyn Downie’s lecture
, and his general thoughts on the conference