Painted Concrete



OCTOBER 16, 2020, 12PM EST

"Making Philosophical Sense of Medicine’s Position on Mind and Body"

Center for Philosophy of Science Lunchtime Talk, University of Pittsburgh (via Zoom).

ABSTRACT:  Medicine has cultivated a philosophical identity in the last forty years, challenging the biomedical model in favor of a holistic approach that “integrates mind and body”.  I argue that, valuable as it has been for the profession to consider its position on mind, the movement of holism has been driven by misdefinitions of ‘dualism’ and ‘reductionism’, and these confusions have left medical science with an unstable foundation.  More than that, incoherent discourse about mind has led to everyday clinical practices that compromise patient safety, a problem that’s become pressing in the context of “long Covid”.  Following Engel, I suggest that medicine’s clinical and ethical success require property dualism, that is, recognition of conscious experience as a fundamental feature of reality.  From this perspective, medicine’s central philosophical challenge has yet to be addressed: the task of explaining medicine as a science that pursues experiential data and sets out to achieve experiential goals. 

FEBRUARY 20, 2020

“From Mind to Morality: The Value of Consciousness in Medicine”

Workshop on Consciousness and Medical Ethics, Rice University Department of Philosophy, Houston, TX.

FEBRUARY 12, 2020

“Is Current Management of Medically Unexplained Symptoms Safe?”

Live webinar for the Patient Safety Action Network.

NOVEMBER 21, 2019

"'All in Your Head': Medicine's Worrisome Struggle with Experience as Evidence"

Rotman Institute of Philosophy Public Lecture Series.  Central Library, London ON.

NOVEMBER 10, 2019

"How Can We Do Better with Medically Unexplained Symptoms?"

Featured speaker and panelist with Dr Danielle Ofri and Jennifer Sheehy.

Diagnostic Error in Medicine 12th Annual Conference, Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill, Washington DC.

NOVEMBER 11, 2019

"Improving Communication and Diagnostic Error in Cases of Medically Unexplained Symptoms"

Diagnostic Error in Medicine 12th Annual Conference, Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill, Washington DC.

MARCH 28, 2019

“Medicine’s Metaphysical Morass”

Rotman Institute of Philosophy/Brain and Mind Institute Joint Coffee Hour series, Western University, London, ON.

FEBRUARY 27, 2019

“Making Philosophical Sense of Psychosomatic Symptoms”

Work-in-progress presentation, Rotman Institute of Philosophy, Western University London, ON.

OCTOBER 21, 2018

"'Causes in the Mind': Ethical and Legal Challenges with Medicine's Most Common Diagnosis"

Moderator and presenter on panel with Maxine Eichner, Chloe Atkins, and Mala Rafik

American Society for Bioethics and Humanities, Anaheim CA

APRIL 5, 2018

"Ethics and the Ambiguity of 'Medically Unexplained Symptoms'"

Fondation Brocher, Geneva Swizterland

MARCH 28, 2018

"Bodily Stress Syndrome in ICD-11-PHC: Impact on Patients with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis"

Meeting of the coalition of ME/CFS organizations known as "Forward-ME".  House of Lords, London.

MARCH 6, 2018

"Ethical Challenges in the Context of Medically Unexplained Symptoms"

Fondation Brocher, Geneva, Switzerland.

OCTOBER 24, 2017

"Why bioethics should be concerned with medically unexplained symptoms"

Kennedy Institute of Ethics, Washington DC.

OCTOBER 21, 2017

"Why Clinical Ethics Should Contribute to the Question of Medically Unexplained Symptoms"

American Society for Bioethics and Humanities, Kansas City MO.

JULY 11, 2017

"An Ethical Path Forward on the Question of NICE Guideline Revisions for ME/CFS"

Meeting of the coalition of ME/CFS organizations known as "Forward-ME", House of Lords, London.

JUNE 8, 2017

Video presentation to the UN Special Rapporteur on Health and Human Rights as a member of the Global Ad Hoc Committee for Health Equity in ICD-11 Borreliosis Codes.

NOVEMBER 9, 2016

“The Gender Principle as a Barrier to Healthcare Access for Women”

International Congress on Women's Health Issues, Baltimore MD.

JUNE 7, 2016

Live webinar for the Ehlers-Danlos Awareness Foundation.

FEB 17, 2016

“Patient Resentment and Doctor Frustration in Psychogenic Diagnosis: How Informed Consent Shows Us a Better Way”

Hastings Center for Bioethical Research and Public Policy, Garrison NY.

FEBRUARY 4, 2016

“Ethical Issues Related to Psychogenic Diagnosis”

Hastings Center for Bioethical Research and Public Policy, Garrison NY.

OCTOBER 24, 2015

“Mistaken Denial of Medical Care for Periodic Paralysis Patients”

Biannual Periodic Paralysis Association Conference, Orlando FL

MARCH 12, 2014

“The Case of Justina Pelletier and the Problem of Mistaken Denial of Care”

Intelligent Medicine Podcast with Dr. Ron Hoffman

FEBRUARY 27, 2013

“Diagnosing Rare Diseases”

Interview for “Discuss the Mental Health Manual”, a MOOC for mental health professionals about the new DSM-5, sponsored by Alliant University.