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Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Where in the World is Dr. Haas?

Dr. Haas (left) and NCBC
Board Member Dr. Tersigni (right)
together at the Vatican
Our President, Chief Ethicist, and fearless leader Dr. John Haas travels more in a month than many people do in their entire lives. Trying to keep up with his movements throughout the weeks is both interesting and challenging. Well the NCBC Blog says: "Challenge Accepted!" We will be bringing you posts about all of the the genuinely interesting travels of Dr. Haas whenever we can. Unfortunately we are already sorely behind, so we will have to begin where we are able. One of the most interesting trips Dr. Haas took this Fall was to Rome from November 15th-17th. While there, he attended the 27th International Conference of the Pontifical Council for Health Care Workers, held at the Vatican. Dr. Haas is a Consultor to the Council and as a guest speaker, Dr. Haas gave a presentation on Ethical Committees in Hospitals Today as part of the "Ethics and Humanization" portion of the Conference. He was joined by NCBC Board Member Dr. Anthony Tersigni. Dr. Tersigni gave a presentation entitled Hospital Management: Between Rationalization and the Right to Health. The conference was conducted under the theme of the human and spiritual mission of hospitals and the hospital setting as a primary place for evangelization.

Dr. Haas and
Archbishop Zymowski
Dr . Haas also had the pleasure of visiting briefly with Archbishop Zygmunt Zymowski, the President of the Pontifical Council for Health Care Workers.

News regarding this conference might go unnoticed and unappreciated if one did not consider the ultimate mission of the conference this year:

"This twenty-seventh international conference of ours will concentrate on the theological and anthropological aspects of the world of health and illness which converge in and characterise [sic] the life of a hospital and life inside a hospital, a temple of humanity and a crossroads of peoples, a setting for human mission and a profound expression of the theandricity."

  • Taken from the Presentation Packet for the XXVII International Conference of the Pontifical Council of Healthcare Workers

Now one sees that what may have seemed like a vaguely interesting, but perhaps abstract and obscure meeting of medical experts is now shown in the light of its ultimate goal: To be a forum to discuss the incredible function of healthcare systems in our world. These systems do not just operate as crossroads of theology, anthropology, and medicine. Rather, these systems and institutions exist as the embodiment of the human attempt to provide a fully integrated ministry which finds its foundation in the two natures of Christ. The hospital serves as an institution where the human spirit rises to the occasion of treating the illnesses of the human body, emulating, in a way, our Lord's mission on Earth.

If this Council's mission is to:
"Stimulate and promote the work of formation, study and action carried out by the diverse Catholic International Organizations (C.I.O.s) in the health care field as well as other groups and associations which work in this sector, on different levels and in different ways."
then it can only follow that the Council desires to use this international conference to help implement their truly beautiful understanding of healthcare, as stated above, into the many areas of the healthcare system.

With Councils and conferences such as these, the Catholic Church clearly makes it her mission to instill the humane into healthcare and the moral into medicine.

We are glad to know and see that The NCBC was so well represented at this conference in November.

Read the entire packet from this year's conference.
Read more about the Pontifical Council for Healthcare Workers.
See and read presentations from the archives of past conferences.

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