Kelsey N Berry, Ph.D., is faculty at the Center for Bioethics and Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School, where she is also Associate Faculty Director of the Master of Bioethics Degree Program and Co-Director of the Master of Bioethics Degree Virtual Program.
As a health policy researcher and ethicist, Kelsey employs empirical and normative methods to analyze health policy and support progress toward ethical systems of health and health care.
Special emphases of her work include the ethics of rationing scarce health resources, the distribution of responsibility for health and social determinants of health (SDOH), effective models for managing ethical questions in healthcare payer and delivery organizations, and policy approaches to support the health of vulnerable populations. Her PhD (health policy & ethics, Harvard University) examined the role of social factors in determining patient admittance to organ transplantation and substance use disorder treatment systems, using qualitative and quasi-experimental methods to describe how health actors allocate access and arguing for fairer approaches through the lens of distributive and procedural justice theory. Her current research focuses on the role that health plans, health care delivery systems, and pharmaceutical manufacturers play in carrying forward health equity, including mechanisms for doing so and the ethics of pursuing various forms of equity given other worthy moral commitments (e.g., efficiency, fair distribution of responsibility).
In tandem with her research, Kelsey educates future practitioners in bioethics through her leadership of and teaching in the Master of Bioethics program at Harvard Medical School. She also consults to health organizations about the values associated with particular decisions or activities for which they are responsible and methods for making hard choices in the face of conflicting values.
Through her research, teaching, and service, Kelsey is dedicated to developing practices that will enable all of us to acknowledge what we owe to one another in our shared systems of health and healthcare.
Center for Bioethics
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