For the last 13 years, the Stanford Center for Biomedical Ethics has played several valuable roles at the Medical School, providing ethics education, coordinating bedside ethics consults and hospital ethics committees, and doing cutting-edge research on ethical problems in our health care system. Not everyone knows, though, that, like the Medical School itself, the Center has a dual focus, working on both clinical medicine and basic biomedical science. The Center has provided ethics "consultations" not just to clinicians, but to basic science and clinical researchers whose projects raise ethical and social concerns.
Bench-side consultations might be conducted for a variety of purposes, including analyzing the impacts of a particular policy on the conduct of bench science, identifying the ethical or social impacts of conducting a particular line of research, or suggesting specific actions to minimize risks and maximize benefits to society of pursuing that line of research.
In addition, SCBE scholars are active in providing advice to policy makers on issues relevant to the conduct of biomedical research and its application, most recently to these state, national, and international bodies:
- California Senate Committee on Appropriations: Report of the California Advisory Committee on Human Cloning
- Calfornia Senate Committee on Health: Regulation of Human Cloning
- California Senate Committee on Health: Stem Cells and California Law
- California Advisory Committee on Human Cloning
- Lasker Foundation - Forum on Biomedical Ethics
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: Secretary's Advisory Committee on Genetic Testing
- U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee: Hearing on Human Cloning
- U.S. Representatives Lynn Rivers and Curt Weldon: Advisor for House Bills HR 3966 "Genomic Research and Diagnostic Accessibility Act"
- Human Genome Diversity Project (Ethics subcommittee)
- The National Academies (Committee on The Use of Third Party Toxicity Research with Human Research Participants, the Science, Technology, and Law Program)
- National Human Genome Research Institute Haplotype Mapping Project (Ethics Advisory Board member)
- National Human Genome Research Institute (Advisor: five-year plan on Non-Medical Applications of Genomics)
- NIH Program Project on Human Genetic Variation (Ethics Advisory Committee)
- National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Stroke/Office of Research Integrity Ad Hoc Study Section
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (Secretary's Advisory Committee on Genetic Testing)
- U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs (Ethics Advisory Committee - BEST study)
- U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs : Genetic Tissue Banking Initiative, Cooperative Studies Program (CSP) Coordinating Center, (Ethics Advisory Committee, Scientific Advisory Committee)
- World Cell Line Collection 1 (Collaboration between the Human Genome Diversity Project and the Centre de l'Etude de Polymorphisme Humaine)
- Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development Directorate for Science, Technology and Industry Committee for Scientific and Technological Policy
- International Genetic Epidemiology Society (Ethics committee)