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Consciousness, Capacity, and Compulsion

February 24

Novant Health Forsyth Medical Center Conference Center

Program Overview

The third statewide conference of the Clinical Ethics Network of North Carolina, “Conundrums in Clinical Ethics Consultation: Consciousness, Capacity, and Compulsion.” took place on Friday, February 24, 2017, at the Conference Center of Novant Health Forsyth Medical Center in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. This full-day conference featured both large and small group sessions on leading topics in clinical ethics.


Conference speakers examined multiple issues in caring for patients whose decision-making capacity is compromised or absent, including:

  • Diagnosis of permanent vegetative state, minimally conscious state, and death by neurologic criteria.
  • Treatment choices for unconscious and minimally conscious patients.
  • Criteria for assessment of decision-making capacity.
  • Caring for patients whose conditions limit their freedom of choice and action.

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