Craig Klugman, Ph.D. is a professor of bioethics and health humanities at DePaul University where he co-directs the Bioethics & Society minor program. Dr. Klugman also serves on the ethics committee at Northwestern University Hospital and is a voting member of the National Biodefense Science Board under the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. He is the author of over 650 articles, book chapters, OpEds, and blog posts on such topics as public health ethics, bioethics, digital medicine, crisis and disaster ethics, professionalism, end-of-life issues, education, health/medical humanities, ethics of execution, and health policy.  Dr. Klugman is the editor of several books including Research Methods in the Health Humanities (Oxford 2019), Medical Ethics (Gale Cengage 2016), and Ethical Issues in Rural Health (Hopkins 2013; 2008). He is the executive producer of the award winning film Advance Directives and has developed programs for using art and improvisational theater to teach health students. He  frequently gives talks to universities, medical and nursing groups, companies, and community organizations as well as consults with hospitals, pharmaceutical and tech companies. Dr. Klugman has been interviewed for The New York Times, LA Times, ABC News, HBO Vice, New Republic, National Geographic, Men’s Health, The Daily Beast, Sinclair Broadcasting, Scripps News Service, and NPR. Besides numerous academic journals, his writing has appeared in Pacific Standard Magazine, Huffington Post, LifeMattersMedia, Chicago Tribune, Medium, Cato Unbound, The Hill, San Francisco Chronicle and the Houston Chronicle.

New OpEdS

with Parker W, Patel A, and Piscitello G (2021, January 12). OpEd: Lightfoot must activate phase 1b of COVID-19 vaccination distribution now. Chicago Tribune. 

“As front-line medical providers and bioethicists, we understand the need for a risk-based and equitable system of vaccine distribution. We agree it made sense to start with health care workers at the front of the vaccine distribution line. We appreciate that many health care workers have not yet had an opportunity to be vaccinated (e.g., community health centers, federally qualified health centers, private practices) and lament that some health care workers have refused the vaccine. But the current system is inefficient and unjust if thousands of doses sit unused in freezers.”

with Patel A. (2020, December 2). Commentary: Who gets the COVID-19 vaccine first? Social justice must be a factor. Chicago Tribune.

“As bioethicists, we endorse the argument that the greater disease and death burden borne by communities of color combined with lack of improvements in combating social determinants of health, mean that communities of color should be at the head of the distribution list. Medical ethics and the principle of justice compels us to create health care policy that is not only equal (treat everyone the same) but equitable (get everyone to the same starting place).”

Commentary: As new COVID-19 surge hits, Illinois hospitals must coordinate resources.

“Illinois should develop an explicit plan to centrally organize patient admissions, including directing ambulances with critically ill patients to higher-level centers and transferring patients liberally when needed. Hospitals also should publicly share data on beds, equipment and staffing and share resources and personnel. These efforts will lead to a more efficient use of resources and alleviate existing COVID-19 disparities.”

New media coverage

Recent media interviews/coverage:

Guzman, Melyssa (29 September 2020). COVID-19: DePaul deals with the pandemic. Good Day DePaul.

Cook, Michael (27 September 2020). Does Covid-19 spell the death of autonomy? BioEdge

Cook, Michael (19 September 2020). Are you a burnt-out bioethicist? If so, you’ve got company. BioEdge.

Wojnicki, Rachel (3 September 2020). Craig Klugman Named to National Biodefense Science Board. Newsline.

(14 August, 2020). Bioethicist shares perspective on university’s approach to health monitoring. DePaul Newsline.

Knowles, Jason (23 July, 2020). COVID-19 testing labs overwhelmed by by high demand due to surges. ABC 7 Chicago.

Pieper, Mary (23 June, 2020). In Nashville, Sharing COVID Data with Police Raises Fears Among Blacks, Immigrants. Digital Privacy News.

Klugman cited, for instance, the Tuskegee Syphilis Study conducted on African American men from 1932 to 1972 by the U.S. Public Health Service….”These are stories that live on in these communities,” Klugman told Digital Privacy News.

Kaufman, Mark (June 11, 2020). The Pandemics Most Bitter Pill: Plagues and disease are familiar villains in human history. Mashable.

“Wild medical discoveries that change the course of history — namely penicillin — can happen. “But those are rare,” emphasized DePaul University’s Klugman. “Science does not work that way. It works that way in Star Trek. But that’s not the real world. Science is slow. Science is methodical.”

Ballew, Jonathan (May 15, 2020). ‘Selfish and Gross’: Illinois Natives Plan Bar Sprees in Wisconsin. The Daily Beast.

“While you made the decision to expose yourself, your family, your friends, and your neighbors did not get to make that choice—you forced it on them,”

“Transparency Is Central Ethical Concern During COVID-19 Pandemic” Medical Ethics Advisor 36 (5, 2020 May), pp. 54-56.

“People can deal with adversity and disappointment,” Klugman says. “What they can’t deal with is what they don’t know about.”

Flores, Hillary (May 14, 2020). The best kinds of face masks to purchase, according to health experts. The DePaulia

Blakely, Linda (May 13, 2020). DePaul Bioethicists and Their Role in the Fight Against COVID-19. DePaul Downloads [podcast].

“Instead of focusing on individual patients as much as we used to, we’re now focused on systems and populations and communities. We’re not just looking at what is the best choice for this one patient, but what is the best choice for the community and how to distribute scarce resources”

Loiacponi, Stephen (May 11, 2020). Protests, confrontations rise amid tensions over easing coronavirus restrictions. Sinclair Broadcast.

“One of the ironies of public health is that when it works, nothing happens. No one gets sick and no one dies,” Klugman said.”

Kaufman, Mark (April 24, 2020). What needs to happen before your boss can make you return to work. Mashable.

“Now we’re saying people can work, but you could get this disease and bring it home,” said Craig Klugman, a bioethicist and medical anthropologist at DePaul University. “It’s unfair for society to make that sort of sacrifice. We need to give people the support they need to get through this.”

Schutze, Jim (April 16, 2020). Problem with Channel 8 Miracle Drug Story if Stupid News, Not Fake News. Dallas Observer. – Citing my blog post 

Quraishi, Ash-har (April 1, 2020). Healthcare Workers Face Difficult Choices in Fight Against Coronavirus. Scripps Media (TV).

“When you call 9-1-1 because your loved one can’t breath, there will be no one coming. That’s the worst case scenario.”

Kuzma, Cindy (March 17, 2020). A Bioethicsts’ Guide to COVID-19. Chicago Magazine.

“We’re asking people to stay at home to minimize the spread of the disease, so we don’t overwhelm the health care system and we protect the people who are most vulnerable.”

Educator, writer, and consultant in bioethics and health humanities