Last updated on: 2/2/2011 | Author:

Robert Truog, MD Biography

Professor of Medical Ethics and Anesthesiology at Harvard Medical School
Not Clearly Pro or Con to the question "Should the Death Penalty Be Legal?"

“If I think of the kind of a hypothetical where you have an inmate who is about to be executed and knows that this execution may involve excruciating suffering, that inmate requests the involvement of a physician, because he knows that the physician can prevent that suffering from occurring, and if there is a physician who is willing to do that, and we know from surveys that many are, I honestly can’t think of any principle of medical ethics that would say that that is an unethical thing for the physician to do.”

“Perspective Roundtable: Physicians and Execution,” New England Journal of Medicine, Jan. 18, 2008

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Professor of Medical Ethics and Anesthesiology, Harvard Medical School
  • Senior Associate, Critical Care Medicine, Children’s Hospital Boston
  • Director of Clinical Ethics, Division of Medical Ethics and the Department of Social Medicine, Harvard Medical School
  • Chair, Harvard Human Subjects Research Committee, Harvard University
  • Member, Harvard University Faculty Committee, Edmond J. Safra Foundation Center for Ethics
  • Recipient, Christopher Grenvik Memorial Award from the Society of Critical Care Medicine
  • MD, University of California, Los Angeles
  • MA, Philosophy, Brown University
  • Honorary Masters Degree, Harvard University, 2000
Quoted in:
  1. Is Participation in Executions Ethical for Medical Professionals?