Undocumented Patients: Two Journeys

We hear many stories these days about immigration. Certainly, healthcare workers see undocumented individuals in Emergency Rooms or clinics. What is that experience like of being undocumented and needing healthcare? What would be helpful for clinicians to know? Does healthcare ethics have something to say on this topic? Today we hear from two healthcare leaders on these issues. One, who was an undocumented person and who later became a physician in the United States, and the other is the healthcare leader who supported her journey.

Our guests in this episode include:

  • Mark G. Kuczewski, PhD, is the Fr. Michael I. English, S.J., Professor of Medical Ethics and also Director of the Neiswanger Institute for Bioethics and Health Policy at Loyola University, Chicago
  • Dr Johana Mejias-Beck, internal medicine pediatrics specialist, currently at the University of Missouri, Kansas…and one of the first undocumented students to attend the first medical school in the country to accept applicants with DACA status.

Additional resources relating to or referenced in this episode:

Sessions are monitored on a monthly basis by CME office and content confirmed to be evidence based and without bias. Secondly, the CME Program Director and CME Coordinator reviewed and approved all material prior to the educational activity being approved to confirm that the educational activity was evidenced based. Peer reviewed journals and other literature are used, as applicable during discussions.

References for Further Study:

  • Kuczewski, M. G., Mejias-Beck, J., & Blair, A. (2019). Good sanctuary doctoring for undocumented patients. AMA journal of ethics, 21(1), 78-85.
  • Kuczewski, M., Blair, A., Fitz, M., & Mejias-Beck, J. Limbo Really Exists: Undocumented Youth at Risk July-August 2019.
  • Kuczewski, M. (2019). Clinical ethicists awakened: Addressing two generations of clinical ethics issues involving undocumented patients. The American Journal of Bioethics, 19(4), 51-57.
  • Samra, S., Taira, B. R., Pinheiro, E., Trotzky-Sirr, R., & Schneberk, T. (2019). Undocumented Patients in the Emergency Department: Challenges and Opportunities. Western Journal of Emergency Medicine, 20(5), 791.
  • Ellis, P., & Dugdale, L. S. (2019). How should clinicians respond when different standards of care are applied to undocumented patients?. AMA journal of ethics, 21(1), 26-31
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