Ethics and Professionalism in Neonatology Year 1

Ethics and Professionalism in Neonatology Year 1

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Welcome to the Ethics and Professionalism in Neonatology Year 1 Curriculum. This is an innovative 3-year curriculum that partners with OPENPediatrics, a free interactive digital learning platform sponsored by Boston Children's Hospital.

This curriculum, which incorporates adult learning theory and objectives based on neonatal-perinatal medicine training requirements and results from our national needs assessment, has been successfully peer-reviewed and piloted. Using the ‘flipped classroom’ approach, you will view peer-reviewed videos and case-based chapters by national experts, as well as suggested topic articles. The lessons are written and developed by content experts in the fields of neonatology and clinical ethics. Then, if applicable at your institution, you will attend an interactive in-class to delve into either in-depth group discussion, simulation or enacted role-play, depending on the lesson and available resources at your institution. In-class sessions reinforce both knowledge and skills and are facilitated by your own faculty, using our Facilitator Guides. This curriculum can help participants achieve competency and confidence in these important domains, crucial to the field of neonatology. To continue to assess the efficacy of our curriculum, de-identified data will be collected and analyzed, with IRB approval. 

We truly appreciate your participation and feedback. As co-creators of this curriculum, we are always available to assist with questions you may have, both in deciding whether to complete this curriculum individually or implement this curriculum into your program and throughout the year. Please let us know if you have any questions. Thank you in advance for your participation!


Christy Cummings, MD, Neonatologist, Ethics Associate, Boston Children's Hospital; Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School

Gina Geis, MD, Neonatologist, Ethics Review Committee, Albany Medical Center; Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Assistant Professor for the Center of Bioethics, Education and Research, Albany Medical College

Learning Objectives

  • Become more knowledgeable and confident with the principles and theories in ethics and professionalism relevant to the care of neonates and their families
  • Learn to systematically apply ethics knowledge and implement morally sound and compassionate strategies for responding to ethical and professional dilemmas in the NICU

Course Format

For each of the five lessons, you will:

  • Complete a short pre-test
  • Read the case study, discussion questions, and relevant reading
  • View the video
  • Complete a short post-test, of which you will need a score of 80% or better on to continue
  • If applicable, attend an interactive in-class session at your institution

You will receive a certificate of completion at the end of the each year's curriculum. 

Suggested Audience

Trainees, Faculty and Staff that care for newborns and their families, including Pediatrics, Neonatology, OB and Maternal Fetal Medicine

Course Directors

  • Christy Cummings, MD
  • Gina Geis, MD


Mark Mercurio, MD, MA, Christy Cummings, MD, Gina Geis, MD, Theophil Stokes, MD, Annie Janvier, MD, PhD

Release Date

  • Released: July 1, 2017

We are grateful for generous support from the Arnold P. Gold Foundation, the American Academy of Pediatrics Section on Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine, Boston Children’s Hospital Medical Staff Organization, Boston Children’s Hospital Academy for Teaching and Educational Innovation and Scholarship, and Albany Medical Center /Alden March Bioethics Institute.