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Health Care Ethics with Studies in Views of Life

A history of the research subject at Ersta Sköndal Bräcke University College

Research on health care ethics has been conducted at Ersta Sköndal Bräcke University College since 1988. The research subject was developed in cooperation with the Ethics discipline at the Faculty of Theology at Uppsala University and Ersta vårdetiska institut (Ersta Institute of Health Care Ethics). Until 2003 Ersta vårdetiska institut was an independent unit within the non-profit welfare association Ersta diakonisällskap (now Ersta diakoni). Nowadays, health care ethics with studies in views of life is a separate research subject at the Department of Health Care Sciences at Ersta Sköndal Bräcke University College.

Health care ethics and its place in society

Society is very interested in examining health care ethics issues. There are a number of reasons for this: advances in the field of medical devices mean people are faced with difficult new choices; the rights of patients have been strengthened, providing new material for discussions about ethical requirements and obligations; the demographic trend has resulted in an ageing population with ever increasing care needs, but also limited economic resources; priority discussions are becoming an increasingly common issue; consequently there is renewed interest in questions concerning professional ethics.

As a research subject, health care ethics with studies in views of life covers a broad spectrum of issues within the fields of medicine, health care and aspects of social work. Health care ethics may be viewed as an umbrella term for ethical aspects of all manner of human services.

The study of health care ethics includes both practical problems in everyday care and theoretical matters. Roughly speaking, the field of study includes issues within the following subareas:

  • key ethical concepts, for example, autonomy and integrity/privacy, dependence and independence, dignity, health and quality of life
  • the link between ethics and policy, for example, matters concerning fairness and priorities
  • matters concerning the relationship between ethical and legal standardisation
  • the  relationship between the person requiring treatment, health care or care and the person providing it
  • matters concerning professional ethics within medicine, health care, care and social work.

Health care ethics seminar

The hub for our research activities is an active working seminar with meetings once a month. The primary aim is to give doctoral students and those studying for a master’s degree the opportunity to air thesis texts/draft academic papers. Prospective texts are also reviewed by established researchers.

Anyone wanting to know more about the research seminar can contact the research project director Gunilla Silfverberg, tel. 555 050 48.

Senast uppdaterad: .


Ersta Sköndal Bräcke University College
Phone: +46 8 555 050 00
Questions about studies:

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Box 11189, SE-100 61 Stockholm
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