Kennedy Krieger has developed the Ethics Committee to help patients, families, and staff navigate difficult ethical situations by offering free consultations. The program also provides ethics training and reviews of hospital policies and procedures, as appropriate.

Dedicated to the health and well-being of individuals treated at the Institute, our program is here to support you in every way as you consider important decisions.

Assistance with Ethical Decisions:

In treatment or educational decisions, your team is the first place to seek help. Families should never hesitate to discuss any question with the physicians, therapists, teachers, or other professionals on their team.  However, sometimes it helps to discuss your ethical questions and concerns with others who are not directly involved in the situation. Our Ethics Committee team can facilitate discussion between involved parties to help resolve ethical issues.

Common Ethical Concerns:

  • You are 18 or older and may want a different course of treatment than what your parents want for you.
  • Disagreements arise with the treatment team about the best course of action.
  • The treatment team determines that goals have been met, but you still see a need for therapy.
  • School personnel determine that a child is ready to transition back to a public school, but you disagree.

Our Approach:

If you have an ethics-related concern, Contact the Ethics Committee via email or phone. We will then gather information related to the situation and explore the concerns in detail. There is often a meeting held to discuss the situation so that all voices are heard.

We will then offer written recommendations regarding ethically permissible options to be considered by those involved in the decision. Ultimately, care and treatment decisions belong to you and your team.

Who We Are:

Comprised of caring, concerned, and experienced Kennedy Krieger staff, as well as individuals from outside the Institute, the Ethics Committee includes doctors, nurses, social workers, educators, clergy, administrators, family members, community members, and individuals with disabilities. They have a broad knowledge of ethical issues and extensive education, training, and experience in helping patients, families, and staff wrestle with difficult decisions.


Contact Us:

Ethics consultations can be requested by a patient, student, family member, or staff member.

The Ethics Committee can be reached at 443-923-7686 or by email