Courtney S. Campbell is the Hundere Professor of Religion and Culture and Director of the Program in Medical Humanities at Oregon State University. A scholar in medical ethics and religious ethics, Campbell has written reports on religion and bioethics for federal advisory commissions and has served on ethics committees for local, regional, and national hospice programs on physician-assisted death. He is a fellow of The Hastings Center.
In Bearing Witness, Courtney S. Campbell draws on his experience as a teacher, scholar, and a bioethics consultant to propose an innovative interpretation of the significance of religious values and traditions for bioethics and health care. The book offers a distinctive exposition of a covenantal ethic of gift-response-responsibility-transformation that informs a quest for meaning in the profound choices that patients, families, and professionals face in creating, sustaining, and ending life. Campbell's account of "bearing witness" offers new understandings of formative ethical concepts, situates medicine as a calling and vocation rooted in concepts of healing, affirms professional commitments of presence for suffering and dying persons, and presents a prophetic critique of medical-assisted death. This book offers compelling critiques of secular models of medical professionalism and of individualistic assumptions that distort the physician-patient relationship. This innovative interpretation bears witness to the relevance of religious perspectives on an array of bioethical issues from new reproductive technologies to genetics to debates over end-of-life ethics and bears witness against the oddities of a market-oriented and consumerist vision of health care that is especially salient for an era of health-care reform.