Clinical Ethics

Welcome to the Catholic Medical Association’s Clinical Ethics resources page. From time to time we will provide new or updated information on issues regarding medical practice and ethics. Click the “Continue Reading” link to find more resources on a particular topic.


May 16, 2013

POLST (an acronym for “Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment”) is a new kind of advanced medical decision-making document ostensibly designed to improve communication and decision-making, especially at the end of life. POLST is spreading rapidly across the United States as a result of a concerted campaign. The Catholic Medical Association published a White Paper on POLST in the May 2013 issue of the Linacre Quarterly, CMA’s journal of medical ethics. To read more about POLST, and to download a PDF copy of the White Paper, click the PDF icon to the right.

  People and patients looking for practical resources for making advanced medical decisions should consider:



September 05, 2012

When to Recommend a PEG Tube: A Decision Tree for Clinicans from a Catholic Perspective

  The question of assisted nutrition and hydration often presents great challenges not only for patients and families, but also for physicians. Catholic moral teaching can be of great help to all people of good will in meeting this challenge. An article issued in the February 2012 Linacre Quarterly by the Catholic Medical Association’s Ad-Hoc PEG Tube Study Group provides resources for ethical and clinical decision making.