The Ethics Committee will be formed in accordance with the Bylaws of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine in correlation with our mission statement. As with all committees, the Board will strive to insure diversity among the committee membership. We feel this is most important in the Ethics Committee, since in our judgement, a diverse committee is more likely to come up with accurate and fair recommendations. View the Ethics Committee Statements.
The tasks of the Ethics Committee are these:
- Any disciplinary issues or allegations of unethical behavior that are brought to the Academy will be simultaneously brought to the attention of both the Board and the Ethics Committee. The Committee will appoint a Task Force consisting of the Chair, the Board Liaison, and a number of committee members who volunteer and are approved for service by the Chair. The Chair will determine the number of individuals who, according to her discretion, is the appropriate number to investigate the allegation. Each individual serving on any task force will be required to sign a statement of confidentiality and a declaration of conflict of interest. The Task Force will investigate the allegation through interviews with the person charged, the person bringing the charges, and any appropriate witnesses or persons of interest. The Task Force will prepare a report which will include their findings as well as recommendation(s) for action by the Board, and will forward said report to the Executive Board. The Executive will have the option of an email or phone discussion and will then forward the report to the Board for full Board discussion and vote at the next board meeting.
- The Committee will issue Ethical Codes of Conduct. Some of these Codes will deal with topics on which the Committee members feel the Academy needs to have a clear stand. These topics will arise de novo from their committee meetings. Some of these Codes will also deal with topics on which the Board charges the Committee to develop an Ethical Code. Ethical Codes will be presented to the Board, discussed and voted on in the same manner in which Clinical Practice Guidelines are reviewed by the Board.
Chair: Al O. Giwa, LLB MD MBA MBE FAAEM
Vice Chair: Jennifer Gemmill, MD FAAEM
Board Liaison: Joe Wood, MD JD MAAEM FAAEM
AAEM Principles and Code of Ethics
The AAEM Ethics Committee is responsible for drafting and maintaining both AAEM's Code of Ethics and Principles of Ethics. These policies are then approved and adopted by the AAEM Board of Directors. View them here.
The AAEM Ethics Committee has drafted the following position statements which have been approved by the AAEM Board of Directors:
- Position Statement on Emergency Department Visitation Policies during the COVID-19 Pandemic (12/11/2020)
Recommendations for the Navigation of Moral Dilemmas during the COVID Pandemic
The AAEM Ethics Committee, Geriatric Committee, and Palliative Care Interest Group collaborated to write recommendations for the navigation of moral dilemmas during the COVID pandemic. Read the statement here.
Common Sense Articles
Common Sense January/February 2021
Melissa Myers, MD FAAEM and Jennifer Gemmill, MD FAAEM
- Who Will Be Their Advocate? A Commentary on Facing Illness Alone.
Common Sense January/February 2021
Jennifer Gemmill, MD FAAEM
Palliative Care & Ethics COVID-19 Story Submissions
Caring for coronavirus patients has brought unforeseen challenges into our practice of emergency medicine. From explaining visitor restriction policies to having daily goals of care conversations over the phone, COVID-19 has changed our practice and challenged our sense of what it means to do the “right thing” for our patients. AAEM wants to hear about your successes and struggles while caring for your patients during the pandemic. We are hoping to compile and share voices from all different practice environments in hopes of processing and learning from our experiences together as physicians.